How Can We Recycle Food Scraps Into Nutrient-Rich Soil?

How Can We Recycle Food Scraps Into Nutrient-Rich Soil?
In our series "Simple Steps to Sustainability," experts from around the world give us their tips and tricks on how to live more sustainably.

Sustainable living is hard enough. Now add the pressures of a global pandemic and all bets are off. 

So we tracked down some experts and asked: How can we recycle food scraps into nutrient-rich soil? 

"One thing that a lot of consumers do, or certainly should consider doing, for that food that maybe is not capable of feeding people or maybe animals is composting," Peter Wright, the assistant administrator of the EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management, said. 

"Cut up your food waste as much as you can," Zero Waste Mindset founder Alexander Furey said. "You can even blend it. Put it in your blender and mix it up that way, if you can. I live in an apartment here, so I freeze my food waste in a bowl," Furey said. "I put it into my freezer in a little bowl, and I'll just put my scraps in bits and pieces in there. And someone's put a compost bin a couple of streets away in a flowerbed. So I just take my compost there and put it into that compost bin. But then with the compost bin, if you have one in your garden or in your allotment, you want to keep moving it, you want to keep stirring it, because you need to get air moving around it to keep the anaerobic digestion process happening."

"If it's organic, it can be composted," Alicia Forero, the business development manager of TerraCycle, told Newsy. "I would say in an apartment or urban setting, it's looking to find what services are available in that area that can allow for composting. But when you're engaging with the service, obviously they will have their own prerequisites because, for instance, some compostable packaging, ... composters don't want that input because the whole premise of compost is that you're taking in organic matter to produce quality compost. Right, so you need nutrition coming in, and some composters, they'll only take up to a certain ratio of compostable packaging because it's an ultra-processed polymer that does break down, but it doesn't contribute anything to the compost."

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