Food Waste Friday ~ 2/3

Last week I was pretty unhappy with all of the “good” food that I threw out from my fridge. This week I did a lot better, but I still dumped 2 cups of homemade chicken stock that I ended up not using and 1/4 brick of cream cheese that had turned green. Sorry – no picture.

I’ve been thinking though, about all of the food that it’s perfectly ok to trash or run through the garbage disposal. So on Saturday last week, I started saving all of our scraps – egg shells, banana peels, avocado peels, grapefruit skins, coffee grinds, onion skin, orange peels, etc. Actually, I didn’t really just start saving it. I save all of our compostable food waste, but I’ve never been conscious enough about it to see how much waste my family of 6 produces in one week.

On Thursday, I gathered everything up and then took a picture of it. After I took the picture, I thought perhaps I should weigh it. So I got out my scale and did that too.

What do you think all of that weighed?

If you guessed 15 POUNDS you are right!

Wow – 15 pounds of garbage that’s not really trash. I am a terrible composter, maybe even the world’s worst, but I do it. I do it in a way that works for me right now, which is bagging it all up lugging it out to our barn where I dump it on a heap at my garden. It breaks down and gets incorporated into my soil for a nice compost. If I did it right, it’d be even better and I will one of these days. Right now, I’m just happy to save 15 pounds of garbage from the landfill. I’m glad I didn’t run 15 pounds of fruit waste down my garbage disposal because I think that would have wasted an insane amount of water. And I’m sad that it’s not standard practice in the US to compost.

I grew up in Germany in the 1980s. Even in the 1980s, Germans separated their food waste from their trash. Their food and lawn waste was kept in separate container, picked up from by the trash company, and composted. I wish that would happen in the US.

Until it does, I’ll keep carting my food waste out to my garden. I hope some of you will consider composting too!

If you’d like more information on composting, here is a link to Composting 101.

Have you blogged about composting? I’d love to read about it! Please leave a link in the comments.

Linking up: Food Waste Friday

Comments

  1. says

    Great idea! It’s impressive that you take the initiative to separate out food waste on your own. I live in a city that has a municipal composting pick-up service, and only something like 55% of households participate!

    • says

      That’s fantastic that 55% of household participate in your composing service. I don’t think that many people in my little town even participate in the free recycling service. It’s very sad.

  2. says

    15 pounds of compost for a family of six? That is pretty good! You are eating your fruits and veggies!

    I moved to the midwest from Canada in ’99. I understand culture shock when it comes to recycling, composting and so forth… Our beer, pop, and milk bottles had a high enough deposit that they were worth returning, and all the stores accepted them. Boy Scouts and Girl Guides made money cleaning up the roads on rural areas and returning empties. The first time I saw someone throw a plastic pop bottle in the trash, I was shocked.

    Clarinda has curb-side recycling as of last year. All you have to do is put it outside and they will come get it, yet we’re the only folks on our block who do. :(

    I have never blogged about composting. We bought this really cool composter last year, and realized we made a big mistake in not getting two: It is like a bug plastic barrel on a pivot that spins to mix the contents. The problem? Since you constantly mix it, you don’t keep chucking in the top and pulling the composted stuff out the bottom. There has to be a month or two without anything new added.

    • says

      We usually have a lot of compost, but this week it’s more than normal. Grapefruits & oranges leave behind quite a lot of waste. And I had 20 avocados to do something with… I’ll have a lot again this week because I have all 5 pineapples yet to do something with!
      I can’t believe people throw out bottles too. They’re worth money if nothing else! Frustrating.

  3. says

    Ugh! I just threw out about 2 cups of cooked chicken today. I kept telling myself all week that I would use it, but obviously, I never did. I think I need to do Food Waste Friday to hold myself more accountable.

    Wow, 15 lbs! That’s wonderful. We have a large container on the counter that we empty every day or so into our compost piles behind the house. I don’t do much with the piles, just the occasional turning.

    We do have curbside recycling which we participate in, though our township only has about a 25% participation rate. People do put their trees out after Christmas.

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