Food waste is a big problem in America, and it’s not “just” because one out of every six Americans is unsure where they’re going to get their next meal. Food waste is also a problem because the equivalent of $115 billion worth of food winds up in the country’s landfills where it produces methane, a greenhouse gas that’s harmful to the environment.
From farms and fishing boats to restaurants and retail outlets to residential homes, food is wasted at every point of the supply chain. While you may not be able to control what happens on a fishing boat or in your favorite eateries, you can control food waste in your own home. If you live in an apartment, you might not think you can do much to reduce the 133 billion pounds of food that’s wasted in the United States every year, but you can — DIY apartment composting.
If apartment dwellers, homeowners and businesses all made changes that led to a 25 percent reduction in food waste in the United States, it would be sufficient to feed over 25 million people for a year. To do your part, you can start composting in your apartment.
DIY apartment composting is a great way to upcycle your food scraps and reduce waste. The only things you need to get started are a plastic or ceramic container that has two lids, some food scraps, non-coated paper, water and Red Wiggler worms.
Here are the steps you should follow to start apartment composting:
- Create Holes: Make holes about the diameter of a pencil along the top and bottom of your container for ventilation and drainage. You’ll use the second lid to capture whatever drains out of your container.
- Line Container: You should line your container with paper, so it’s about one-third of the way full. Tear your non-coated paper into one-inch strips and moisten them before you put them into your container. You can use newspaper, credit card statements or old checks to line your container. Just make sure the paper you use isn’t coated and that it’s not dripping wet when you put it into your composting bin.
- Add Soil & Worms: Put some soil in your container and then add your Red Wiggler worms. Leave your container in the sunlight until the worms crawl into the soil and paper.
- Add Food Scraps & Damp Paper: Next, you’re going to add some food scraps and bury them under some more damp paper strips. Remember — whenever you put food scraps in your apartment composting container, it’s critical to bury and mix them in.
- Find a Cool Location: Once you’ve put your DIY apartment composting container together, you have to find a home for it. You’ll want to keep your container in a cool location that doesn’t get a lot of sunlight.
- Keep It Up: Continue adding food scraps to your composting bin until it contains more soil than food scraps. Once the soil outweighs your scraps, let your container sit until the remaining food scraps have been composted. Once that happens, remove the compost, making sure you leave the worms in place. You can use the nutrient-rich compost to feed your plants, garden or grass. If you have more compost than you need, consider giving some as a gift to a fellow plant lover. After you’ve removed your initial batch of compost, start the composting process again.
Are you looking for a home where you can compost your food scraps? Triple Crown Corporation has a variety of options for you to choose from. Contact us to learn more today!