Worm Farming As One of the Ways to Recycle Food Waste Effectively

Food waste is generated daily at an alarming rate as the world population grows. If we are not caring enough to protect the environment, the food waste can easily fill up all the landfill in no time at all.

Fortunately, there are better ways than throwing away all the food waste into the rubbish dump. Worm farming is a great way to turn your leftover food waste into a natural and rich fertiliser with the help of the worms. These little creatures can easily eat up your leftover kitchen scraps and convert them into valuable worm casting or worm compost.

Even if you live in a small apartment or flat, you can easily placed a worm bin either in a balcony, as long as it is cool and shaded and away from any direct sunlight.

If you buy the worm bin, it normally comes in a stackable plastic trays or containers with maybe at least 3 containers. The bottom most container is usually attached with tap or spout to drain away any excess water. This water known as worm tea is excellent to be used to your plant but it has to be watered down first as it is highly concentrated.

Ok, now that you got the worm bin, place it in a cool and shaded area of your home, maybe on the balcony, at the back of your kitchen or in the garage.

Line up the second container with damp shredded old newspaper and make sure that it is not wet or soggy. You can also add in any egg cartons which has been torn into small pieces, some saw dust and a layer of soil to make it more homely for these little creatures. Make sure that the bedding is loosely piled and not tight to allow for easy movement of the worms.

Then you can add it your leftover kitchen waste but you need to sort them out first as not all are suitable for the worms. You can put leftover fruits and vegetable but not of citrus fruits such as oranges or pineapples. Avoid spicy food and salty food such as chilly, curry, salt, garlic and onion.

Tea bags, coffee grounds, crushed egg shells, bread are great for them too. Other waste such as vacuum cleaner dust, rotten leaves and hair are also suitable as worm feed. Please don’t give them meat, fish or chicken as these could be oily and fatty and not their favourite.

The food can be layered alternately in between the bedding to avoid any unpleasant smell from the worm bin. Then you can add in the worms. The best worms for this job is usually the red worms which you can initially get from the local worm farmers or suppliers.

Given the right condition, the worms can eat away and digest the food waste about half their own weight daily. For example if you have 500g of worms, they can easily eat up 250g of food waste daily. What they excrete ie the worm poo or worm casting is great as natural fertilizer for your plants and gardens. The worm castings are free from any chemicals and able to protect your plants from any diseases.

When the food and bedding is almost finished, you can line up the top container with a new set of bedding and food waste as described above. The worms then would simple migrate to top container, leaving behind the worm castings which you can collect and use for your plants.