7 Ways to Repurpose Food Waste in your Homes


In a country where the recycling system is not as robust, most of the waste generated from households just ends up in landfills and water sources polluting land and water. Even though food waste is biodegradable it takes time for it to break down completely and at the rate that we generate waste the natural breakdown process cannot keep up. On average, the country generates 1 lakh metric tonne of solid waste daily. But the many things that we throw away daily can be used for useful things, our culture promotes ingenuity and sustainability and it’s time we adopt it into our modern lifestyle and repurpose food waste in our homes.

  1. Banana peels – can be used as a natural teeth whitener and you can also use them to polish your silverware. The essence of banana peels also works wonders for leather goods so if you want to give a new look to your leather purses or shoes just gobble up a banana and use the peel to polish your leather.

  2. Citrus rinds – From homemade face packs to delicious marmalade, citrus peels and rinds can work wonders if you know how to properly use them. Use orange peels to make a bird feeder or keep your pesky cats off your house plants. And citrus peels are not dangerous for cats but cats have a natural aversion to the tart citrusy smell that irritates their sensitive noses. You can also use citrus peels to freshen up your garbage disposal, not to mention that they can also be used as a natural cleaning agent if you want to switch to an organic alternative that is not only safer for kids but also your pets. Follow this recipe to make your own all-purpose cleaner.

  3. Onion and garlic skin – No good dish is made without onions or garlic, these smelly root vegetables add umami that we are addicted to. These two ingredients are a staple in many dishes and hence the top generator of food waste as well. Instead of discarding the skin, use it to make soup stock or use water infused with skins to treat itchy skin and other conditions like athlete’s foot. Mix a teaspoon of ground onion and garlic skin into your bread dough to add a punch of nutrients and flavours.
  4. Apple peels – Apples are delicious even with the peels on but some people like to eat without the skin or several recipes also call for skinned apples. But that doesn’t mean that you should let the peels go to waste, make apple cider vinegar or garnish your salads to add some sweet crunch. Apple peels can also be roasted to make delicious chips or better yet enjoy your autumn evenings with a warm cup of tea with this recipe.

  5. Egg and Nutshells – eggshells and shells of nuts like pistachios and peanuts are rich in minerals like calcium that can be used as a natural fertilizer to aerate the soil. Adding them to your vermicompost can also increase yield as they are good for worm reproduction. 

Don’t give in to the popular consumer culture and think before you throw away something. Most of the waste we generate never gets recycled and keeps on accumulating and spoiling the landscape. And even though organic waste is not that much of a concern for most, sorting through the waste we generate and reusing some of it and reducing the burden on our inadequate disposal systems that are already buckling under the immense rate at which we generate waste. Think before you act and make the most out of everything you buy to save your money and the environment. 

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