Before the era of supermarkets, seasonal shopping and health buzzwords, our grandparents reduced food waste not because they wanted to, but because they had to.
With public awareness of food sustainability on the rise, their experience remains as relevant today as it was 70 years ago.
Evacuated during the Second World War from London to a farm in rural Wiltshire, Pauline Tee grew up not taking a single meal for granted.
Ms Tee said meat in particular was a privilege and every scrap would be used.
"Although I was evacuated to a farm, they still had restrictions on what you could use," Ms Tee said.
"The bones for soups, and any leftover meat went into stews or casseroles, they just used everything."
A wealth of knowledge reshaped for modern life
Ms Tee ended up bringing her deep appreciation for food with her when she migrated to Australia in the 1950s.
"My family, they couldn't understand why I'd say 'please don't throw that away, I want to use it'," she said.
"That's stayed with me my whole life because that's how I was brought up."
Ms Tee's attitude is one that her granddaughter Rebecca Sullivan admires to such an extent that she's started 'the Granny movement' in Adelaide.
It is an initiative aimed at preserving the skills of grandmothers particularly in the area of food.
Ms Sullivan said that the solution to modern food waste could be found in older generations.
"There's this wealth of knowledge in our older community and we're really not tapping into it," Ms Sullivan said.
"My grandma was the queen of not wasting food, and actually still is.
"You go to her house and it's like 'Old Mother Hubbard' bare, you know, you walk in and there's nothing in there but from nowhere, she manages to pull out this magical feast."
Ms Sullivan now teaches cooking workshops that use 'granny skills' to reduce food waste, and has featured in major public events including this weekend's Begonia Festival in Ballarat.
"[My grandmother] had this frugal sort of attitude drilled into her and I think all of us could do with having a bit more of that in our mindsets," Ms Sullivan said.
"[Our grandparents] did it, not because they were hipsters — they didn't walk around with man buns and moustaches.
"They didn't eat locally and seasonally because it was a buzzword, they did it because they had no choice."
Our environment is feeling the consequences
The University of Melbourne's Food and Urban Systems research fellow, Ms Seona Candy, said today's food consumption habits were taking a significant toll on the environment.
"Melbourne is wasting, the city as a whole, around 900,000 tonnes of [edible] food a year, so that's around 200 kilograms per person, per year," Ms Candy said.
"Food waste is not only a waste of resources, of land and water, but if we don't stop wasting, then those resources, particularly water, are going to get increasingly scarce."
According to her research with the Foodprint Melbourne Project, the production of this food uses roughly 180 gigalitres of water each year or 113 litres per person, per day.
"Food waste also, through its production and disposal in landfill, generates greenhouse gas emissions, so that's actually feeding in to that climate change process," Ms Candy said.
"If we don't stop, we're kind of shooting ourselves in the foot, really, for future food production."
"We've got to just sort of re-evaluate our relationship with food and try to work out ways that we can do a bit of the management that was done before."