6 Interesting Facts About Composting

Friday, April 30th, 2021
composting and compost turner tips

Composting may SEEM boring, even to those in the industry, but we think it’s actually interesting! There’s a lot to learn about the industry itself, methods used, food waste (and how to solve the issue), and equipment. Here are some interesting facts about composting we think everyone in this sector should know!

1. Composting has a long history

There is evidence that composting has been around since the Neolithic times (that’s 12,000 years!). Known as midden, it is thought that ancient peoples would place their compost directly onto the land and then plow through it with their light equipment. Not surprisingly, manure was likely the first product used for this early form of composting.

2. Composting can be a great way to use food lost to landfills

According to the USDA, 31% of food loss happens at the retail and consumer levels. Not only does this affect families who COULD have used that food, but the issue also causes secondary waste of land, water, labor, and energy.

The EPA released their 2018 numbers for municipal solid waste (MSW), reporting that 292.4 million tons were collected. That equates to 4.9 pounds per person every day. 94 million tons of this waste was recycled or composted, with 25 million tons being composted. This rate is wonderful but could be better.

3. Composting benefits communities

Communities can come together to compost if their municipality has a large-scale composting service. This helps reduce food waste coming from homes and restaurants, but it also saves the city money by reducing waste removal costs. For individuals, it can be a lot easier and cheaper to get locally sourced compost for fertilizing gardens and crops.

4. Compost can help the ground recover from droughts

Adding a top layer of compost to the soil in your garden or on your croplands can help the ground retain moisture. Of course, you must make sure that the compost you use is of high quality. The best way to ensure this is to make your own. Not only will you be able to improve the quality and capabilities of your soil now, but you can create better soil for the future.

5. It is vital to know what you can put in a compost pile

This is true for both backyard and commercial composting. Small and large-scale operations must adhere to regulations that prevent odors from pestering others. Also, some waste items will ruin compost, which can be a disaster for commercial operations. For example, did you know that walnut leaves can be poisonous to other plants, even after they have been mixed into compost? On the other hand, a product you wouldn’t think COULD be included in the mixture has been successfully composted by the military: TNT.

6. Compost piles can combust…spontaneously!

Fortunately, this only occurs rarely. But, it is a fact worth remembering! If your compost piles become too dry and too hot, they could catch fire. This is just one reason why proper maintenance of temperature and moisture is vital to the process.

Looking for more information about composting

At SCARAB International, we design and build custom compost turners for small, medium, and largescale operations. Our equipment is made in America and built to last! We know the importance of turning to the process of creating compost. View our machines that are For Sale and our Leasing Options to see what we have available. You can also call us at (806) 883-7621 to learn more about our Products and Services, or ask us any questions you may have.