I’ve never had much of a green thumb. Then again, I have never tried that hard to get my thumbs green. However, over the years I’ve become more cognizant of the absurd amount of food we simply throw away without hesitation. I’m totally guilty of this problem. That apple has a bad bruise? Toss it. The potatoes have sprouts? I’ll pass. The celery looks a little limp? No thanks.
These examples may be made in jest, but I’m sure we’ve all thought or said something similar at some point. So, what can we do to eliminate excessive waste? For starters, you can always buy in smaller quantities! But beyond the obvious, there is a more ‘eco-friendly’ alternative. Composting.
According to the EPA, food scraps and yard waste currently make up more than 30% of what we throw away, but could be composted instead. Why should we care? There are many benefits to composting:
- It reduces the waste stream. The U.S. spends billions of dollars on waste management. Composting at home allows us to divert some of that waste from landfills and turn it into something practical for our yards.
- Cuts methane emissions from landfills. Landfills generate biogas as a by-product that is roughly 50% methane and 50% carbon dioxide, both of which are potent greenhouse gases.
- Improves soil health and decreases erosion. Instead of relying on synthetic fertilizers that contain harmful chemicals, compost contains three primary nutrients needed by garden crops: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
- Conserves water. Agriculture is a major consumer of water even though irrigation systems are quite effective. Research has shown that just a 1% increase in organic soil helps it to hold 20,000 gallons more water per acre. By using compost, farmers do not have to use as much water and still maintain higher yields of crops.
- Reduced personal waste. As previously mentioned, food waste is a big problem for American households. Studies have shown that a family of 4 throws away roughly $150 of food per month with fruits and veggies being the biggest contributors. Composting is a great way to recycle those discards.
If you’re wondering what can and cannot be composted, here is a handy reference for you:
Here at the Stump Farm, where White Raven Financial is located, composting has been a standard for quite some time. From worm bins to crates of compost, almost all the food scraps and yard waste is placed in these containers to help create another bounty of fruits, vegetables, and to energize the vegetable garden, beautiful flowers, and plants that decorate the property.
Thanks for reading~