University survival kit: Offering hints and tips to parents and students

Posted by Rob Smyth | 15/09/2016 | Category: Community

Over the coming weeks parents across the country will be waving goodbye to their children as they head off to university.

Whether they come home at weekends or only during the holidays, changing household numbers can mean that food gets wasted.

The habits and plans that have served for many years, may perhaps have served their time as family life moves into a new phase.

Those setting up their own home or moving into shared student accommodation may for the first time have total responsibility for cooking all their own meals.

The comforts of home cooking may have to be replaced by the realities of living on a student budget.

Central England Co-operative has joined up with Love Food Hate Waste to come up with some top tips on how to save money and reduce waste for both students and their parents.

Timetable Alterations

One of the key ways to help you save money if to plan meals and menus as students get their heads around a new academic timetable.
People can find readymade two week meal planners online or can even cook together with new housemates to keep costs down and help to build friendships.

Shared Fridges

By checking that the fridge temperature is below 5 degrees, this can extend the life of many foods such as chicken, fish and salad by an extra three days.
Raw food needs to be stored in clean, sealed containers on the bottom shelf to prevent contamination.
Leftovers need to be covered and then eaten within two days – cling film or reusing takeaway containers with their close fitting lids are perfect for this.

Empty nest ... full fridge?

Whether you are struggling with or secretly enjoying an empty nest, it’s probable that the fridge is fuller than it used to be!
People will still be sleep shopping – wandering around the supermarket on auto pilot and buying foods that you just won’t get through in time.
Get into the habit of making a list and checking the fridge, freezer and cupboard as you might not have got through your stocks at the usual rate.
If you do find that you end up cooking too much, it’s always worth freezing individual portions.

Helping hand

Need a little help or inspiration? Why not try some of our great recipes over the coming weeks and months?

Spicy Chicken Chilli -

Leftover Pork Stir Fry -

Salmon and Chilli Fishcakes -

For hints, tips, recipes and great deals visit

About The Author: Rob Smyth

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Promoting the great work of Central England Co-operative across all forms of media.