Throw Out Your Leftovers Day

Just about everyone has placed leftovers in their refrigerator, fully intending to eat them later, but ended up forgetting about them or becoming too involved in their lives to actually consume the food before it spoiled.

Now that food is just sitting there, not only judging them but also potentially hosting a variety of harmful bacteria and maybe even fungi. Yes, that food has spoiled and it desperately needs to be thrown out.

Fortunately, there’s a holiday that’s perfect for this task. This holiday is called Throw Out Your Leftovers Day and it’s observed annually on November 29th. It’s the ideal day of the year to get rid of those science experiments that were once leftover food.

The History of Throw Out Your Leftovers Day

Unfortunately, we’re unsure of when this holiday was created or who invented it. The origins of this holiday seem to have been lost. Don’t worry, though. We did find some useful information about “leftovers” that we discovered while trying to track down Throw Out Your Leftovers Day. So let’s explore the history of leftovers a bit in this section.

Before the icebox became a standard fixture in homes at the beginning of the 20th century, leftovers didn’t really exist. There was no way for people to keep leftover food, so it was either discarded or given to pets and/or farm animals. But once people gained the ability to save food for later consumption, the concept of leftovers was born.

Once people could start saving leftover food, they developed some distinct ideas about what should be done with them. During World War I, saving and then later eating leftover food was seen as something very patriotic—as something that reduced the burden on the nation’s food supply. This continued through the Great Depression when saving leftovers was not only looked upon favorably but was often a necessity of daily life.

During the 1960s, it became common for people to simply discard their leftover meals. After all, food prices had become quite cheap, and throwing away leftovers was seen as a mark of middle-class status.

During the 1980s, the status of leftovers changed again as more people were working outside the home. This meant that “Latchkey Kids” needed a quick and easy way to eat while their parents were working. Leftovers fit this bill quite nicely.

Observing Throw Out Your Leftovers Day

On this holiday, people are encouraged to discard all of that leftover food that has spoiled. Just toss it right into the trash. When that’s done, be sure to take the time to spread the word about this holiday using the hashtag #ThrowOutYourLeftoversDay on social media.

When is it?
This year (2024)
November 29 Friday
Next year (2025)
November 29 Saturday
Last year (2023)
November 29 Wednesday
Food & Drinks