A Year of Collecting Food Scraps in A Bucket

It has been my first full year of composting, or really, my first full year of saving food scraps and keeping them in a bucket on my fire escape until it gets picked up to be made into compost.

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Each month before I set my bucket out on the front step, I used my hanging scale to weigh it, diligently tracking my results in a spreadsheet.

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And now, here we are, twelve months later, and we have successfully diverted a total of 215 pounds (plus some here or there) from the landfill!

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It is pretty impressive and I am very proud of myself for this accomplishment!

Here’s the month by month breakdown of our food waste poundage.

  • January 15.5 lbs
  • February 17.22 lbs
  • March 12 lbs
  • April 18.71 lbs
  • May 8.8 lbs
  • June 20.44 lbs
  • July 22.84 lbs
  • August 25.4 lbs
  • September 19.74 lbs
  • October 21.61 lbs
  • November 18.5 lbs
  • December 14.58 lbs

That’s 287 pounds of organic matter going back into our soil and helping plants thrive. Wahoo!

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18 comments

  1. You guys should totally check out Taiwan whose government collects all food waste and turns it into either pig feed or fertiliser, which it then hands back for free. Oh and also has 70% recycling rates 🙂 Keep up the good work and Happy New Year.

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  2. Congratulations. I have a five gallon bucket outside the garage door (in winter). But about 50 steps away is bin 1 of 3 of my compost area. In the garage are 2 worm bins (one goes to school occasionally). We do have lawn and garden trimmings and a friend brings several 5 gallon buckets of coffee grounds with filters each week for my garden or compost bin. I have several friends who bring me grass clippings and shredded leaves or call me to come get theirs (mulch for the garden). So, you might think I live in luxury. I am trying to persuade my daughter who lives in DC (may be about your age) to start composting. “No room” is her response. I keep trying.

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  3. Oh… I need to do the counting as well! Here in Norway, food scraps goes into their own bins (brown where I live) and they are emptied every 2 weeks. Depending on where we live I Norway, some is being composted, and some they use to create biofuel and/or biogas. Nothing goes to the landfill 🙂

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      1. Yeah, we have a pretty good recycling program here in Norway. Not only do we have bins for paper, food, plastic and regular trash right outside the door, but we also have an awesome recycle centre right down the road. Where we can bring anything we want 😉 and they will handle it responsible 🙂

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  4. Wow, that’s an awesome achievement! I am so envious of your pick-up composting service. Here in Australia that doesn’t exist at all, or at least not where I live. I think we are really behind over here on so many levels, sustainability-wise. My husband and I collect our compost scraps in a container in our fridge and I take them in to a community compost bin (which is not a common thing, unfortunately) at my work every day or second day, depending on how much we have. It’s a bit laborious but so worth it when you think about how many kilograms of organic matter are being saved from going into landfill. I think it’s awesome that you weighed all your compost throughout the year!

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