One of the best things you can do to live in a greener and more eco-friendly way is to compost food waste instead of throwing it away. Composting is far easier than you may imagine. Even if you don't have a garden or any outside space at all, we cover the options below so you can compost food scraps without the carbon footprint.
Composting does not just allow us to reduce food waste and lessen our negative impact on the planet and people. It also allows us to make valuable material to grow our food, either in our gardens or even inside our homes.
Wherever you are composting, it is important to understand the fundamentals. You should have a basic understanding of how composting works and of what you are trying to achieve. Composting is not difficult. But it is important to understand the basics before you get started to get the best results.
- Composting is a living system. It requires micro-organisms, and sometimes also other creatures like worms, to work. Thinking about the needs of our little helpers and providing the right environment for them is crucial to good compost creation.
- There are two main types of composting-with oxygen (aerobic) or without oxygen (anaerobic) decomposition. When we create compost at home, we aim for aerobic decomposition. Aerobic microbes use oxygen in the compost pile to process waste efficiently and effectively.
- Temperature is another critical factor. It can influence how well and how quickly food waste breaks down. (Though the temperatures we aim for will depend on which type of aerobic composting we choose).
- Moisture is also important. Successful compost creation means ensuring the materials are not too wet or too dry.
- Creating a balance between nitrogen and carbon in a composting system, and ensuring a good mix of both types of material, is one of the most important things in home composting. For nitrogen-rich food waste to break down and make good compost, we need to add carbon-rich materials too. Carbon-rich materials include untreated cardboard and paper, wood chips, dry leaves, and straw. The perfect ratio between these two types of material will depend on the composting method or methods you choose.