Zero Waste Living Interview

Hugo Rut

Hugo Rut is the founder of Lowly Food an online resource dedicated to helping people understand the carbon footprint of the food on their dinner plate and to make choosing low carbon food easy.

Hugo provides simple and tasty recipes that he’s thoroughly researched which are guaranteed to lower your carbon footprint.

Supermarkets have neglected to give environmental information about the majority of their products. At Lowly, every recipe comes with a detailed carbon footprint breakdown. 

Hugo’s mission is:

to allow everyone to change the food supply for the better. I want to enable everyone to eat healthy & save the planet.

This month sees Hugo taking his vision one step further with his trial launch of  “Lowly Zero Waste Recipe Boxes”.  Currently, a London based delivery service of a new sustainable zero waste recipe box.  The recipe boxes contain delicious low emissions recipes guaranteed to lower your carbon footprint. Ingredients are sustainably sourced and delivered using 100% reusable packaging by bicycle courier – no plastics used EVER.

In this interview Hugo talks about why he started Lowly Food and what he sees as his long term vision.

Zero Waste Living Interview

TMG: Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself and what made you start Lowly Food?

Hugo: Over recent years I’ve grown steadily more aware of agriculture’s negative impact on the planet. I wanted to understand how I could eat more sustainably and reduce the footprint of my diet. After researching different foods I came to realise – how and what you eat can have a big influence in reducing your environmental impact.

I also realised trying to eat sustainably is incredibly complex. A variety of factors make up a product’s eventual environmental impact, most of which consumers have little visibility on. Some include; food type, season, country of origin, food miles, transit and storage 2-3. This means selecting what to eat is tricky and confusing.

I started Lowly to make choosing low emissions sustainable food easy. I provide simple and tasty recipes that I’ve researched which are guaranteed to lower your carbon footprint. I also include weekly menus with bulk ingredient lists and meal plans to tackled food wastage.

What does zero waste mean to you?

I take zero waste to be a holistic way to live which seeks to actively reduce ones impact on the planet.

What made you decide to set up the Zero Waste Recipe Boxes?

Creating a recipe box was the next logical step for me. I think it’s a great way to make eating sustainable easy and fun. I’ve always liked the idea of recipe boxes. Boxes can be an amazingly simple way to cut down on food waste – as you receive the exact ingredients you need. In theory it can be a very efficient and enjoyable way to cook.

The problem is that most modern recipe boxes, like hello fresh or gusto, are all excessively packaged and contain ingredients that aren’t too environmentally friendly. I wanted to flip this on its head and provide a recipe box that would have completely reusable packaging and include recipes that would be tasty and great for the planet.

Lowly Food Zero waste Recipe box

Who do you see as your ideal customer for your Recipe Boxes?

I want to make my boxes accessible to everyone. I’m passionate about providing a product that everyone wants and enjoys. It’s my mission to make sustainability desirable.

Can you give us an example of the meals you would be able to cook with a typical weekly Recipe Box? Are your Boxes Vegetarian or Vegan or do they include Meat?

Sure, all the recipes provided in the boxes are individually researched to be seasonal and sustainable. This doesn’t mean you’ll get lot’s of bland stews and roast veg. instead, I try and create recipes that are interesting and tasty. Some examples of recipes from last weeks box are: “Red Cabbage And Leak Winter Risotto” & “Slow Cooked Red Wine & Root Vegetable Shepard’s Pie”. All the boxes are Vegan for the time being. That being said, I want to make Lowly as inclusive as possible. So I am researching how I could provide non vegan low-impact options in the future.

And, finally what’s your long term vision for Lowly Food?

I have grand visions for Lowly Food. I want to build a company that offers customers the easiest possible way to eat sustainably – choose Lowly. Watch this space!

A huge thank you to Hugo from Lowly Food. And, now I now I just need to wait until he starts delivering his Recipe Boxes to Oxfordshire.

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10 thoughts on “Zero Waste Living: Interview with Hugo Rut”

  1. I love this idea! We are vegan as well, and I am always a bit stumped for inspiration in the kitchen. So to have the supplies and recipes delivered would be amazing. It would make me be a little more inventive. Since turning vegan we have seen a dramatic decline in the amount of package and food waste we created

  2. This is a great idea, i wish all food shops would sell produce without lots of packaging I am starting to use my local green grocer more now as he uses good old paper bags.

  3. This sounds like a great idea. The ethos of the company is very on trend so I am sure he will do well. After trying out several recipe delivery services I would definitely opt for something more focused around sustainability. My eldest is learning all about it at school so he would be happy with the choice too!

  4. I love the idea of recipes based on carbon footprint. It makes so much sense. We are trying to improve our attempts at green living, so will definitely follow this up.

  5. This seems like a great idea, there is far too much packaging used for food nowadays so this definitely sounds like something we all need to be considering for the sake of the environment.

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