Food is of course an essential part of life but globally we actually waste one-third of it. In numbers, that is around 1.3 billion tons per year or 1000 tons every minute! With starvation still an issue in the world, that is a problem by itself, but to add to the issue where does much of that wasted food end up? The answer is: in landfills, where it rots releasing methane. Methane is extremely damaging to the environment because it is a greenhouse gas 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Even when food waste is incinerated, because of the amount of water it often contains, it requires a large amount of energy to burn it so is a largely inefficient method. Recycling food waste, on the other hand, has many benefits such as converting it to fertilizers or alternative fuels to reduce the use of fossil fuels. In this blog, we will look at the importance of food waste recycling and how best to do it.
Much of our food waste can be used for recycling, including:
Packaging and liquids such as oils and milk cannot be used for food waste recycling and should be disposed of using an alternative method.
Global lockdowns due to the outbreak of COVID-19 have caused more and more people to stay at home which has resulted in a substantial increase in home food waste further exacerbating the problem. If you aren’t food waste recycling at home, now is a good time to start!
For apartment blocks in Hong Kong, property management should look to push out campaigns to encourage the recycling of food waste. This will also help them align with government initiatives to reduce food waste and its upcoming food waste collection program.
Some local authorities around the world collect food waste but if they don’t in your area, you may wish to home compost some of your waste food such as vegetable peelings, egg shells, tea bags and coffee grounds. Home composting is not suitable for plate scrapings, meat, fish and their bones though and these items should be placed in a non-recycling bin.
To store your food waste safely before it is collected or composted, you should invest in a food waste recycling bin (if not provided by your local authority).
There are various recycling bins available for food waste on the market but some are a little more advanced than others. GF Technovation (powered by the Guardforce Group), for instance, has developed a Smart Food Waste Recycling Bin to encourage food waste recycling for home composting.
This unassuming device is auto-deodorizing and sterilizes itself regularly to keep the bin free of odors and germs, which is especially important for residential settings. It is also equipped with IoT technology to alert users to its fill level so you never come back to a bin overflowing with waste food! The bin can also verify user identity by card or QR code scanning, and weigh each load of disposed content and record it for each user automatically. This seamless operation is convenient for the property or building management to keep tenants’ disposal records.
It is not only suitable for home use either, the built-in user identification makes it perfect for school campus and campaign use and also for installation in other large premises such as offices and hospitals.
Every small step we take to being more sustainable is changing our planet for the better and what better place to start than at home! Learn more about GF Technovation’s Smart Food Waste Recycling Bin here, and start helping the environment today!