Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Over the past few weeks, we’ve significantly reduced what we’re throwing away. By significantly I mean we’ve reduced our landfill rubbish by well over half. We’ve also reduced our recycling a little.

I’m sad to share that most of our kitchen waste was going into landfill since we have neither a compost bin nor a worm farm. Husband, however, did a short half-day course in sustainable living and brought away a piece of extremely relevant information. Our local council now encourages people to throw their food scraps into the garden waste bin. I knew that was the case in other council areas but didn’t know it was in ours. Not only do they encourage it but they give local residents bench top bins and compostable bin liners.

We already had a bench top bin and most of what went into it was food scraps. Unfortunately when we emptied it most evenings it went into the rubbish bin outside. Our habits have not had to change at all. The only difference is that the scraps now go into the garden waste bin instead at the end of the day. We can also throw in used tissues and shredded paper. I shred any correspondence which has personal details on it so all that is now going into the kitchen bin instead of the recycling one. In fact, shredded paper for the recycling bin needs to be put into a paper bag first because the bits of shredded paper can cause problems. Not so with the food scrap bin; just throw in the shredded paper as is.

I would encourage anyone whose local government provides a green waste bin to find out their policy on food scraps. You may get a pleasant surprise.
If you can put your food scraps into your garden bin, be aware that it’s preferable to wrap them in newspaper – which is acceptable – or compostable bags. Otherwise they get smelly and, since our bin is only picked up fortnightly, we don’t want that! Alternatively, you can freeze all those scraps until bin day and then throw them in. I guess it depends on how much disposable freezer space you have.