When it comes to waste management, much of the attention is focused on recycling materials like papers and plastics in order to reduce the environmental impact that we are making. But equally important to consider is organic waste, of which food waste is a major component. As organic waste decomposes in landfills, it produces methane, which we all know is a major contributor to global warming. As a result, there is a growing movement to keep food waste out of landfills, and instead find other uses for it that will actually produce a net benefit for the environment.
An important factor to take into account is the nature of food production itself. Research has shown that up to a third of food produced in developed countries is wasted, especially fruit and vegetables. There are no winners in this scenario — precious land devoted to agriculture producing food that is not consumed, with perfectly good food being thrown out and left to rot in landfills while starvation continues to ravage parts of the third world. A shift in thinking is needed in order for better outcomes to be reached when it comes to managing food waste.
Keeping food waste out of landfills
It is essential that food waste is kept out of landfills. This is not just to prevent it from releasing methane into the atmosphere as we described early, but also helps you to keep costs down at home! Food waste is fantastic for composting, soil conditioning and worm farming, and you won’t have to spend money on going out to buy it yourself.
Recycle, recycle, recycle
There is often a lot of confusion when it comes to recycling. People are unsure of what to do with coffee cups, containers of leftovers, etc. Do you put containers with organic waste still inside into recycling bins, or will that disrupt the recycling process? This is something that people often wonder, and they may end up just tossing both the container and the organic waste into the general waste bin — the worst of both worlds.
The answer is that recyclable materials that are mostly cleaned of organic waste can still be recycled. You don’t need to rinse out the pizza box, but do your best to remove as much of the food scraps.
And of course, you can always have your food waste handled by the experts. Solo offers food waste collection services that will get your waste to the right place.