The Garbage Disposal: An Exposé


For the past month or so I’ve been curious about the effects of garbage disposals on the environment. I just assumed that it was a great way to dispose of food waste...I mean, I’m keeping it out of the landfill, right?

The truth is, food waste of any kind is not great for the environment. The best solution, obviously, is to prevent food waste altogether. However, this isn’t always as easy as it sounds. Life happens and sometimes food spoils/gets left out/we just forget to eat it. And that’s okay! We just need a sustainable Plan B for these situations.

The next best option is composting. Turning your food scraps into dirt (or bringing it to a local composting center or a friend who composts) is sustainable and reduces greenhouse gas emissions substantially!

These are the two eco-friendly options for food waste...sadly, garbage disposals didn’t make the cut. It’s right down there with the landfill in terms of sustainability. Turns out only 70% of the food you put into your garbage disposal is considered “water” and the other 30% still gets sent to the landfill. So maybe your garbage disposal is 70% better than the garbage?

Honestly, this whole garbage disposal thing is a bit confusing to me. But, the bottom line is you should always try to avoid food waste, and compost it when it (inevitably) comes about. If all else fails, the garbage disposal is still a better option than the landfill. At least you’ll be deferring 70% of your waste!


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