Gill Black from Ocean Grove has saved 2005kgs of food scraps from landfill in less than 12 months by supporting a new waste reduction program that is gaining momentum in the Geelong region.
Sharewaste is a free mobile and web app that connects people who want to recycle their kitchen scraps with neighbours who are already composting, worm-farming or keep chickens.
Interested people register with Sharewaste as a host (receiving food scraps) or as a donor (donating kitchen scraps). Donors then send the host a private message to arrange a drop off.
Gill registered as a host in July 2018 and is now accepting food waste from 10 local families.
She has made the drop-off process super easy for her donors by placing a large, secure container at her front gate. Donors simply empty their food scraps into the container and continue on their way.
Each week, Gill weighs the scraps and divides them between her three worm farms, eight chickens and four compost bins.
She also accepts coffee grinds from a café near her workplace and can receive up to 20kgs of grinds each week.
The worm juice, compost and coffee grinds are used to improve the soil and promote growth in her expanding vegetable garden.
Gill’s inspiration to join Sharewaste comes from her desire to reduce waste.
“I’m not a great gardener, but I hate waste so this seemed the perfect solution. Some people are nervous about keeping a worm farm or compost bin and worry they’ll get it wrong,” she said.
“Sharewaste allows them to learn from the donor how keep a worm-farm or compost bin, or they can just donate their scraps.
“I have 10 donors now and they can drop off their scraps whenever it’s convenient for them. A blackboard at the front gates shows the total kilograms of food waste saved so my donors see the impacts of their efforts.”