Garbage Disposal or Compost Bin?


At some level I think all of us want to minimize our impact on the earth.  Maybe it is because we care about our children, and their children, and their children, and so on and so forth.  Maybe it’s because we feel compelled to care for this planet that has been entrusted to our care.  Maybe you just like living the eco-friendly life.  Either way, whatever your motivations, taking care of the environment can lead to nothing but good outcomes.

So, as a part of that what do you do with your kitchen scraps?  Some advocate having a garbage disposal that grinds all matter to smithereens before sending it to the septic tank or wastewater treatment plant.  Others contend that it is better to corral that organic waste and use it to create new, nutrient rich soil through the use of a compost bin.  But which is best?  Turns out the decision is yours.  Both methods keep organic waste out of landfills.  But each method has different benefits and drawbacks.

Consider these things when deciding what works best for you and your household:

  • Compost bins can stink. While compost is great for growing vegetables and flowers once it has matured, it can take a long time to reach that stage.  Are you prepared for the vermin that will visit your compost bin if you can’t completely secure it?  If not, a garbage disposal might be just the thing for you.  In addition to mice and snakes, bees often seek shelter in compost bins.
  • Compost bins require attention to perform optimally. You can’t just set up a bin and walk away.  They have to be watered during dry periods, their performance slows during cooler weather periods, and they often need to be ‘fed’ some type of enzyme or worms to help with the process.
  • Garbage disposals will not give you the rich, organic soil you can expect from a compost bin. If you want the best dirt available, composting is your best option.  Or making friends with someone who is a composter!

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