Worms are so much more than the creepy crawlies that dwell in dark damp soil. They have much to offer. Here are 5 reasons that every home should seriously consider housing a few thousand worms.
1. Superior to Under Sink Garbage Disposals
While most of us would agree a mechanical garbage disposal system can be a good solution for food waste, it is common for them to be a household headache as well. Mechanical in-sink food waste disposal systems often have an annoying sound, and have been known to eat up good utensils. Secondly, fibrous foods such as celery, asparagus, coconut fiber, or dishcloths can wrap around the unit causing it to seize. If food is not flushed properly, odor can become problematic.
The link above suggests water is wasted when using mechanical disposal systems and that food composting is a better solution for our food waste. It is recommended to not have a sink garbage disposal in homes with septic systems, as food waste can cause damage. If you live in a municipality, your city waste management facilities are left to battle excess food sludge.
Composting worms (known as red wigglers) can eat half their weight in food scraps daily. Worms do not make any noise, and while some vegetables or fruits may not be recommended in high quantity, all fruits and vegetables can be composted in a worm bin. There are no mechanics to jam or clog. Odor is rarely an issue. If worms are overfed and unable to keep up with demand, odors from rotting food can quickly be negated by adding a “brown” source such as shredded paper or cardboard.
2. Better For The Environment
,The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates 22 percent of American waste is discarded food. Beyond food, compostable and organic materials such as newspapers, cardboard and yard waste lend to increased production of methane gases (greenhouse gases) when sent to the landfill. Worms can easily recycle this same waste without harming the environment and their byproduct, called vermicast, increases the productivity and nutrient contents of soil.
Scot Bathgate, of Brittish Columbia Canada, desires to provide innovative solutions designed to improve sustainability for home owners. Through his company, Green Tools, Scot offers products to minimize the customers environmental impact. Scot is a supplier in both Canada and the United States of the Hungry Bin, a product created in New Zealand. He witnessed first hand while living in New Zealand how Hungry Bins convert organic waste into a nutrient rich liquid and fertilizer. Each Hungry Bin creates an ideal living environment for worms and can process up to 4.4 lbs of organic waste daily. If you have questions regarding Hungry Bins, you may contact us at Roof and Skillet or purchase online at https://greentools.ca
3. Vermicomposting Creates Organic Fertilizer
Kim Bolton, owner of A Vermi Farm located near Knoxville TN, stumbled into her vermicomposting business when she set up her first worm bin to raise worms as a food source for pets. When it came time to harvest the vermicast, Kim shared it with a neighbor for gardening. ” I noticed healthier plants, more yields from those plants and less pests.” This sparked a desire to learn all she could about the benefits of worm castings as an organic fertilizer. Today, long after her pet eels are gone, Kim’s business A Vermi Farm, produces one of the best Vermicast products in east TN. Her product is sought after by many organic farms in her region.
You can visit her website to learn more about vermicomposting at https://www.avermifarm.com
4. Positive Impact on Future Generations
Kim is passionate about sharing her knowledge of vermicomposting at no charge. Her reason? “There probably isn’t a planet B. Overuse of herbicides have rendered our soil nearly useless. Vermicompost heals our soil and turns it into healthy, nutrient rich environment to grow chemical free food. This knowledge should be shared to benefit ourselves, the planet and future generations.”
Worldwide, the use of worm compost as waste management is catching on. Worm bins are being introduced to schools as well as incorporated into cafeterias and businesses as a green initiative for future generations.
Google search Worm Composting and you will find many YOU TUBE videos and TED talks from around the world promoting the practice.
5. Personal Satisfaction
Stephen and I have been owners of 5 hungry bins for 2 months now, and plan to offer vermicompost through Roof and Skillet Farms in Northwest OH in the future.
Knowing we are improving our environmental impact through simple vermicomposting is very satisfying. It is fun to watch our worm population grow and thrive. We have been able to educate ourselves and others about this simple solution to food waste. We previously had no idea how much improper management of food waste is harming the planet. It is amazing how our food waste can be managed in our own home with no odor. We are looking forward to incorporating the vermicast into our Roof and Skillet offerings.