How To Recycle Food Waste At Home
Food scraps are a large part of the average waste in American homes, especially during the holidays. A U.S. EPA study states over 38 million tons of edible food was disposed of into landfills in 2014. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations reports one-third of fruit and vegetables purchased in markets was wasted in 2011. They calculate food waste is the most common item that makes it to landfills from everyday trash disposals. As food waste sits in landfills and rots, it produces methane gas due to never being returned back the soil.
Wasting food is not okay on so many levels. We can help reduce food waste in our landfills by recycling kitchen food scraps at home. In turn, it will naturally lessen the need for trash bag liners because we are eliminating “wet” garbage. This effort benefits the environment by keeping both excess food and trash bag liners out of landfills and oceans. Restaurants and markets can also prevent food waste in landfills by donating healthy edible food to local food banks.
Recycle Food Waste
The easiest way to recycle food waste at home and keep it out of landfills is to compost. Compostable items can be any of the following:
- Inedible food; tea bags
- Food scraps from a meal
- Food-soiled paper; pizza boxes, paper towels, napkins
- Oils used to cook food; fats, oils and grease
Many people avoid composting altogether because they believe composting is stinky or they do not think that they have the room to compost. The best approach whether you have a lot of space or minimal space is to separate your garbage collection with two bins. One for dry recyclable items and one for wet biodegradable kitchen scraps.
Pro Tip #28
When composting food scraps at home for your garden, be certain if you include scraps such as meat, egg shells, bones or fat, that you use a Bokashi airtight composting system. This type of home composter will deter bugs, animals and stinky smells.
Kitchen Scrap Containers
Finding a good kitchen scrap container can be overwhelming. To help out, have put together some of our favorite Amazon affiliate products for holding your kitchen scraps. We have included a few of our favorite containers including Bokashi bins for composting meat, eggshells and oils (this type of composter is airtight while keeping any stink and pests out.)
We didn’t forget about those of you who prefer a plastic bin liner. You will find BioPost’s 3-gallon approved compostable bags to be helpful. When first looking at these bags you may think they are plastic, but no worries. These recommended bags are actually not made from plastic at all. They are made from a 100% certified compostable material which is derived from corn starch. Sturdy and strong for standing up to food scraps and compostable waste.
Let us all do our part to help the environment by keeping excess plastic out of our landfills and oceans.
Pro Tip #29
Use a smaller bin for your wet compostable food and then empty it more often into your yard waste bin for your local pick up, or empty it into your own composting area if you have more space or vertical garden.
Whether you have minimal space to compost or a huge yard, our favorite composting system has to be this fabulous space saving creation from GardenTower Project. Grow a variety of vegetables, herbs and flowers simply from kitchen scraps. See how The Garden Tower Project can turn your kitchen scraps into fertilizer for growing a vertical organic garden anywhere. Check it out with our affiliate link to “Turn Kitchen Scraps to Fertilizer.”
Pro Tip #30
If you choose to use your local yard waste service for disposing your food scraps, be certain to check their website or call and verify what is accepted and if they have restrictions.