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FoodKeeper App Notifies You Before Your Food Spoils!

Wasted food--it drives us crazy and drains our dollars.  According to the EPA, the United States disposed of more than 35 million tons of food in 2013, with 95 percent ending up in landfills or combustion facilities. Once in landfills, food breaks down to produce methane, a potent greenhouse gas which contributes to climate change. One big reason for this big waste is that expiration dates are wrong or overly cautious.

Novak Sanitary Service, the premier waste collection provider and an active community supporter in the greater Sioux Falls, SD area wants to introduce you to FoodKeeper, the USDA's FREE app designed to help consumers calculate food expiration dates for perishable foods.

The app, available as a mobile application for Android and Apple devices, is an updated version of the food safety brochure that was developed by USDA, Cornell University and Food Science Institute. USDA released a video on the matter where an official explains, “Many products may have a sell-by date of say April 1, but they could be good in your pantry for another 12 or 18 months. And by throwing those out, what you’re doing, is you’re contributing to food waste in the United States.” The video used a box of dried pasta as an example.

FoodKeeper offers food storage recommendations, cooking methods, and sends you a reminder when food is near expiration.

The FoodKeeper is designed to find and offer specific storage timelines for the refrigerator, freezer, and pantry depending on the product. The FREE app will give you cooking tips or methods for meat, poultry and seafood, and will note on the device calendar when products were purchased and send notification when they are nearing expiration.

“I use it for items I’m not going to use right away—something that’s going to sit around in my pantry for a while or some produce I might forget to use,” says Chris Bernstein, team leader for food safety education at the USDA. The app also answers questions about food that may have been mishandled.  For example, it will let you know how long a product that should be refrigerated can remain safely unrefrigerated.  It may save you money; food that you would have thrown away may be perfectly fine for consumption.

 When at the market, consider downloading FoodKeeper Android and Apple  and give it a try. Remember, to look at the foods you have in the house before buying more of the same product.   Work to build your meals around items that may be nearing expiration to avoid food waste.   Shop wisely, and be careful not to overstock your cabinets. A bargain is a bargain only if you use the product. If you throw the product away, it is money and product wasted.

Always looking to the future, Novak Sanitary Service constantly monitors and evaluates new technologies and strategies to better serve our customers.  We're your neighbors and, just like you, we are committed to the environment and doing all that we can to reduce waste and increase sustainability.

For more information on how we can help you with your waste management, recycling, and general collection needs, please visit us at //