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What To Do With Food Scraps Without Composting at Home

Team Compost Connect, 17 June 2024
What To Do With Food Scraps Without Composting at Home

Composting is an essential practice to help mitigate climate change, enrich soil health, and build a more resilient future for our planet. 

However, not everyone has the space, resources or ability to maintain a home composting system. Whether you’re living in an apartment, travelling regularly, or lack outdoor space – there are several options for your food scraps (that don’t involve sending them to landfill).

This article will explore what you can do with your food scraps without a compost bin at home – and why it matters in the first place.

Why Is Food Waste In Landfill A Problem?

When organic matter is sent to landfill to decompose, it creates methane, a greenhouse gas around 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide. This methane traps heat under the ozone layer and warms up the earth’s climate – a large contributor to anthropogenic (man-made) climate change. 

Pile of bio waste on a vegetable farm

What Is Composting?

Like nature’s version of recycling, composting turns organic materials (like food waste, yard trimmings, leaves and compostable products) into a nutrient-rich feriliser – otherwise known as compost. 

The process is made possible thanks to beneficial fungi, bacteria, insects and worms – these microorganisms all work together to decompose the waste. This process not only diverts waste from landfills, but also increases soil fertility and promotes sustainable gardening practices. 

Compost Bin with Food Scraps and Grass Cuttings

Why Should We Compost?

There are so many benefits of composting. 

Composting can…

  • Divert waste from landfill
  • Reduce carbon emissions
  • Nourish plants
  • Improve soil health
  • Improve agriculture
  • Supprt natural habitats
  • Reduce the need for chemical fertilisers
  • Conserve water (health soils retain more water)
  • Prevent soil erosion

H3: Check With Your Council

What To Do With Food Scraps if You Can’t Compost at Home

Check With Your Council

There are several councils in Australia that accept food scraps in their Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) collection services. This provides a simple way for Australians to dispose of food waste, without starting a compost bin at home.

Find out what your council accepts by visiting their website or sending an email. You can also find out if your council accepts compostable packaging in their residential compost collections. There are currently 53 councils that accept compostable packaging – your council might be one of them.

Ask a Friend or Neighbour

Strike up a conversation with a friend or neighbour and see whether they can take your organic waste for you. If they share your passion for reducing food waste, chances are they’ll be more than willing to take your food waste off your hands. You could even share the end product – nutrient-rich compost – between your gardens and plants.  

Join a Community Garden

As the name suggests, a community garden is designed to be used by a group of people. They’re great spaces for people to come together, learn about gardening and composting, and adopt sustainable habits. 

Find out if there’s a community garden in your local area and whether they’d be willing to accept your food scraps. Some community gardens will embrace this offer, as it will allow them to create more nutrient-rich compost and grow more plants.

Visit ShareWaste

There’s a growing number of online platforms that make composting and sustainability easy. ShareWaste is a simple way to connect with your local neighourhood and see who’s willing to accept extra scraps and compost it or feed it to their worms or animals. It’s simple – just sign up, create a profile, and message people in your area.

Visit ShareWaste

Look Up Home Compost Options (Yes, Even if You Have a Small Space)

If you’re not home composting because of time, resources or lack of space – you might be surprised to learn how simple composting can be. There are even options for townhouses, small spaces and apartments. 

A Bokashi Compost Bin is relatively simple to set up and use – and because of the sealed nature, it can be done indoors on your kitchen bench! Just fill up the Bokashi bin, seal it, and leave it to ferment!

You can also look into a a Subpod – an in-ground and self-fertilising composting system. It works by placing the Subpod in your garden bed, filling it with food and garden waste, then the worms and microbes get to work. Over time, the nutrients created feed your soil and plants. You can find Subpod systems that are suitable to small garden beds on apartment balconies.

What To Do With Food Scraps Without Composting at Home

Composting in your backyard via a traditional compost bin isn’t the only option to recycle your food waste. From council provided bins to online platforms to community gardens – there’s a growing number of exciting ways to turn your food waste into nutrient-rich compost. 

Choose a method that works with your lifestyle and start composting today.

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