It used to be that farm families would frequently have a slop bucket for kitchen scrapes. Once full, it would be fed to their hogs. This made good use of the waste from the family’s food. It is a testimony to how families would make the most of every little thing they had. Make it stretch as far as they could because they had to make do with what little they had. Growing up my family didn’t keep hogs, but we would dump our scraps in the garden to add the nutrients to the ground.
Now, with society becoming concerned with the limit of resources, a similar spirit of reuse has emerged. Old time wisdom is being revisited with studies showing just how beneficial some of the practices were. With the growing trend of living a greener lifestyle, it has come back into the trend to not just throw away the kitchen scraps. Why not harness the power of them? For those that have seen the Back to the Future movies and are flashing back to the DeLorean’s ability to run off of table scrapes, that isn’t quite what I was meaning even though that would be awesome! (Yes, I am a nerd and I fully embrace this fact – haha)
Composting table scraps is the most economical way to fertilize your garden soil. All you have to do is have a place to store it as it decomposes. Preferably, somewhere the smell won’t matter! Not much room is even needed to compost. There are even compost rollers that you can purchase. They are a sideways barrel that turns on its stand like a cement mixer. As you add to it, you are able to occasionally turn the handle to stir the mix. It really takes the work out of adding oxygen to the compost. Compost is such a simple thing to do! Just imagine all of the topsoil that could have come from the scraps those years that people in the city unknowingly threw them in the trash. All of the nutrients condemned to the landfills along with many other things that could have been reused.
So, now we have come full circle and are keeping those precious scraps to add nutrients to the plants we will raise in years to come. I am very happy to say that I now have my own compost bin set up. I have even been considering getting me the literal new version of the slop bucket. I have been seeing them at the health food store. They are decorated similar to cookie jars and are made to store scraps on the kitchen counter until they can be taken out to the compost bin. At least with the passing of the time, the slop buckets are prettier than they used to be!