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The Food Waste Problem – It’s MUCH Worse Than You Think!

I provide the worms for most of our county and city composting programs.  Because I attend many events, I’ve met several interesting people in the field of waste reduction. After a recent long conversation about the issue of Food Waste, and the struggles our local governments have with this issue, I decided to dedicate a blog series about food waste.

What’s the big deal?

How are we “Managing” it?

Is what we are doing sustainable?

What is my “Waste Reduction Footprint”?

As part of this series, I also took the opportunity to see just how much of a difference my own recycling habits have made.   We recycle a large percentage of our food waste using composting redworms,  but I wanted to quantify my “Waste Reduction Footprint”.   I believe you will find this blog series eye opening.  Please feel free to share it with your friends.

Step 1. Start a Fresh Compost Bin (We’ve been using The Worm Inn for years.  It’s the system I manufacture, it holds LOTS of food waste, and it makes Worm Composting very simple and painless.

Even though I’ve got hundreds of Worm Inn’s available, I’ve been using this recently harvested one for the last 3 years.  No reason to dirty up a brand new one when this one will work perfectly fine.

Step 2: Load The Worm Inn with newspaper bedding that has been soaked for 24 hours. I recommend filling The Worm Inn completely with 25 or more full newspapers. Unfortunately, I’ve given away so much newspaper to customers in need lately that we only had about 15 newspapers available.  This filled my Worm Inn about half way (Filling it full with damp, fluffed, newspaper is optimum)…but, life is not always optimum.  Also, I knew we didn’t have very many available scraps on hand this week, so overfeeding wasn’t going to be an issue.

Step 3:Fetch my available food scraps, and then weigh them.  My state certified scale, (Using the appropriate tare weight for the container) shows that I’ve got 1.4 pounds of food waste today that will never see the landfill.

Step 4: Place the food waste in the bedding, and be sure to cover it up with plenty of damp, fluffed newspaper.  This virtually eliminates bugs 99% of the time.

Step 5: Weigh  Composting worms.  Here is your normal pile of 2 pounds of Red Wigglers. (Doesn’t everyone have pounds and pounds of worms just sitting around)?  I’m starting off with 2 pounds because that amount should take care of most of our food waste.

Step 6: Add composting worms.  They will work their way down into the nice, damp, fluffy bedding pretty quickly.

Step 7: Act fascinated that the worms all go down so quickly.  lol…okay, I can’t say I’m actually fascinated by this after many years in the business….but I thought you might be. Now you see them,  Now you don’t!

Step 8: Zip up the bag, Go inside, and enjoy some nice cold ice water.  This is really the most important step, because it shows just how quick and simple it is to compost with worms, and do your part to help reduce food waste going to the landfill.

I’ll update this at least once a week for a yet undetermined period of time.  I’m really curious to see just how much of a difference we can make.

Stay Tuned!

WEEK 1 – April 28, 2013  –  1.4 pounds.

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