You know the labels, Dole and Whole Foods bananas, ORGANIC on most everything, FUJI etc. on the apples, the annoying labels that food suppliers place on the food we buy in the supermarket. In late 2015, while adding some home-made compost to the garden, I was picking these labels out of the garden soil. We had thrown them into the compost bin and I had assumed that these labels would decompose with the rest of the matter we recycled. Whoops, it seems that isn’t the case.
So, we started to separate the labels, peeling them off the fruit and veg and tossing them into the trash. It amazed me how this labeling had increased in the last decade. Seems as if you trade off the benefits of reduced pesticides etc. and they give you a useless label to deal with.
So, how to keep them out of the garbage stream? Why not just ball them all up? No more trips to the bin, they are out of the garbage cycle and it can’t do anything but help and do something creative (? ha ha).
So, we started rolling them up then, when the ball got big enough, I began to occasionally roll the ball under a cutting board to compress the labels, layer by layer. Below you can see the progress of our project, look on the shelf to the right of this picture, in front of the wine bottle. That is about 2 months of labels.
In May of 2017, we’re about 15 months into our first one and it is a bit bigger than a standard baseball. Next phase is documented here.