Food waste is already a larger problem than most of us want to believe. While it is already such a huge problem, there are also alternate solutions, such a food waste composting methods which can be done at your very own kitchen! Instead of just getting rid of the waste or dumping it, if food wastes can be turned into something more useful and productive, then it actually solves a lot of problems already. Starting from fertilizers for your plants, to providing nutrition for the soil, food wastes can actually improve your garden or backyard. The best part is that you can do all these in the comfort of your own kitchen. So what are you waiting for, hurry and read this article to find out more on how to prepare your kitchen for composting food wastes.
Most of our wastes come mainly from the kitchen, especially in the form of food scraps and wastes. Before we can start composting, you need to make sure your kitchen is in the right shape for the composting process to take place. In order to be able to carry out such activities, you need to make a few changes to your kitchen. If you’re new to this and want to find out some ways you can prepare for composting, then read more to find out all the ways you can prepare your kitchen.
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Check all the wastes and separate the edible food wastes in a different container
First of all, you should go through all of your kitchen wastes to see which ones you can compost and which you can’t. Edible kitchen wastes like wasted food or leftovers, and fruit and vegetable wastes such as peels and rinds, should always be kept separate. You can also include over ripened or rotten fruits and vegetables, nuts and eggshells here. The things which you shouldn’t include are meats and milk products since the addition of greasy and oily products as such will produce a foul odor and make your entire compost a wet and soggy mess. For oily and greasy food products, keep them separate, preferably on a well-ventilated, level and dry area and also spread some wood ash to help fasten the breakdown process.
Include garden materials and organic materials to the wastes.
Apart from materials such as wood ash, you can add any other thing, like newspaper, twigs, leaves, soil, sawdust or even manure from livestock if you happen to have any. All these will only speed up the entire breakdown process and you will have your compost ready in no time. If you don’t have any sawdust or manure or wood ash, you can simply buy them form a local gardening supplies store.
Besides that, if you want some nutrient-rich fertilizer from your compost, later on, you can also include some natural garden waste, such as soil and grass clippings from your garden. If you happen to mow your lawn, then you can add the organic waste and grass clippings from your lawnmower bag into the compost. This will enrich more nutrient into your compost and work as a fertilizer for your garden.
Decide what method is right for you
If you want to compost inside the kitchen, then you will most definitely need a bucket or a bin of decent size to keep all your compost inside. You can place this under the sink or by the side of your counter. However, if you want to compost a lot of wastes altogether, then its best to get a huge bucket, and keep it outside.
Prepare the bucket or bin for composting
This can be done following these simple steps. If you choose to compost in a bucket or bin, then you need to prepare it first. Take a large pot or bucket and make 4-5 holes around it at different levels. This will ensure to let air pass inside the compost.
Before you put any compost, put in a layer of soil on the bottom first. You shouldn’t simply dump all kinds of waste altogether, but rather put alternating layers of dry waste first, followed by wet wastes, and so on. You wet wastes can include the food scraps, leftover meals, fruit and vegetable peels and so on, while the dry waste could include straw, soil, dry leaves, sawdust and so on.
Remember to cover the bin or bucket as it needs to retain moisture and heat so that the compost can break down faster. You can either cover it with a plastic lid, sheet or even a wooden plank should do the trick.
To make sure that the wastes are decomposed faster, make sure to stir the compost a little bit every few days as the movement will ensure that air gets into the compost. Also, if the wastes become too dry, you can always sprinkle a little water so that it remains moist.
You should see your wastes and food scraps starting to turn into dry and crumbly compost that is dark brown in color and looks like soil. This is when you can take them out, use them as fertilizer in your garden, and reuse your bin for another batch of compost. If you add fresh food scraps, then make sure to move them and mix them with the old compost so they can break down easily.
Within 2 – 3 months, your pile should start forming compost that is dry, dark brown and crumbly and smelling of earth. There are also readymade composting kits available for those who want to overcome initial resistance to start composting.
A few short tips for composting:
- Cutting, shredding, or blending your scraps into smaller parts will make it break down faster. It doesn’t have to be perfect though, so you won’t need to put too much effort.
- If you don’t have much compost or don’t empty your container often, then simply store your peels in a zip lock bag in a corner of your refrigerator. Also known as freezer composting, this method keeps your kitchen clean, your compost will stay fresh for a long time and won’t attract bugs or critters either. Besides these, you may use easy to clean juicers to keep your kitchen neat and clean.
Hopefully, with all these simple tips and tricks, you can prepare compost in your very own kitchen. It might seem like a difficult task at first, but with enough practice and experimentation, you will soon find yourself enjoying creating compost and doing the world a huge favor.