Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Compost Origami- Never Clean Your Kitchen Collector Again


It never fails. Every time I empty food scraps into my compost bin I look in my trusty kitchen collector and…ugh….there they are, the hanger oners. A few wet carrot peels or a lone tomato slice sticking to the bottom of the bucket, loitering where they are not wanted. No amount of pounding on the bottom or shaking the bucket will convince the lagging food scraps to join their friends.

But now I’ve learned a cleaner way to collect kitchen scraps that doesn’t involve expensive plastic liners. Just simple old newspaper. You can think of it as a craft project for your compost bin. Compost origami, if you will.

Our dear neighbors to the north came up with this clever idea (Canadians, not Daytonians). You simply take three pieces of newspaper and after a few quick folds, the newspaper becomes a liner for the kitchen collector. The newspaper absorbs liquid from your food waste and keeps the carrot peels from sticking to the bottom.

When its full you just chuck the whole package (newspaper and all) into the compost bin. Your compost bin will benefit from the balance of carbon and the newspaper acts as a cover for the food scraps to deter pests and eliminate odors.

Pretty clever…eh?

You may even be able to add this to your kids’ chore list. I’ll bet they’ll complain much less while making origami than they would scrubbing out a compost bucket.

Here is the video Ottawa put together with a cute 6-year-old demonstrating the easy origami folds. If you want to print out instructions, you can find them here.




Have you ever tried to line your kitchen collector bucket? If so, how did it work?

17 comments:

  1. I always add alittle water to the bottom of my container after I empty it so that stuff doesn't stick at least to the bottom. This is a good idea and I always have extra newspaper.

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    1. The extra water is a great tip, thanks for sharing!

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    1. Yeah, those canadians come up with some good stuff when it comes to composting. And ice hockey.

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  3. At Norwood View Elementary, we line our compost bin with newspaper daily. Today we'll start with the origami bucket at the bottom. Great tip.

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    1. That's a fantastic idea to bring this into the clasroom!

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  4. This is great!! I'm sharing this post on fb and twitter!! Thanks Michelle!

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  5. Who has print newspapers anymore?

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    1. That's a good point. I was thinking about bring some home from work.

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    2. I find my local variety store is always willing to give me old newspapers after they cut the banner off. That's all they really need to get a credit from the publisher. The rest gets recycled!

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    3. We are still hold-outs for the print newspaper! Thanks for the tip - my hubbie & I are 67 & 62 and just started composting - last week! Never too old to learn! It always bothered me so much to throw away so much stuff - having so much fun exploring the hints and discovering a surprising array of compostible material. But a bit embarrassed that it took so long for me to learn how to make this liner from a 6-yr-old! - with many stops of the video (o:

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    4. How satisfying, reading the paper while drinking coffee in the a.m. is one of my favorite pastimes and now you are able to compost both! Welcome to the club!

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  6. just awesome - our youth group is going to make stacks of these to sell as a fundraiser - maybe $2 a dozen - we'll see how that goes

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    1. That's a great idea!!! Let me know where you will be selling them.

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  7. There's another good idea from Ottawa. It's a better compost collector called the Kitchen Cone. It uses drop-in newspaper so you don't have to do ANY folding, and it's really well-ventilated so that your food dries out and doesn't smell. It's totally clean and easy. There's a website with videos, just search Kitchen Cone.

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    1. Thanks for the tip, I'll be looking it up.

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