In life we are always looking to make a few dollars, or stretch the few we have to make them go further. Nothing wrong with being frugal is there?
If you are fortunate enough to own a dehydrator then markdowns in meats and or fruit and vegetables can be a real bonus for you. For example in our house we often buy liver, kidneys, hearts etc, and dehydrate it for the dogs. Much less expensive than buying those packs of dried doggie treats sold in the stores and far healthier too. If you really want to make a ‘hit’ with your favorite pet, take a small piece of dried liver, and they will do just about anything for you. They are great training treats.
In industry very little goes to waste either, and if you have a useless leftover, you will always try and find a buyer for it who can come up with a product that will sell.
Ever bought one of those ‘healthy’ Energy Bars while out shopping? They are nourishing and so good for you right? The advertisements tell you they are full of nourishing goodies, which will fill you up between meals. Much better for you than some of the other choices you could be making.
However, most of the ingredients in energy bars are anything but natural. Two key ingredients – soy protein isolate and whey protein – are the waste products of the soy oil and cheese industries respectively. Apple and lemon fiber, used to create a crunchy effect, are also waste products, made from the pesticide-laden pulp left over from squeezing the fruits for their juice. Soy lecithin, another common ingredient, is a waste product of the soy oil industry. Energy bars often include trans fats or industrial vegetable oils.
What can you do with your discarded onion skins? Surely they cannot be turned into something beneficial – or can they?
More than 500,000 tonnes of onion waste are thrown away in the European Union each year. However, scientists say this could have a use as food ingredients. The brown skin and external layers are rich in fibre and flavonoids, while the discarded bulbs contain sulphurous compounds and fructans. All of these substances are beneficial to health.
Production of onion waste has risen over recent years in line with the growing demand for these bulbs. More than 500,000 tonnes of waste are generated in the European Union each year, above all in Spain, Holland and the United Kingdom, where it has become an environmental problem. The waste includes the dry brown skin, the outer layers, roots and stalks, as well as onions that are not big enough to be of commercial use, or onions that are damaged.
“One solution could be to use onion waste as a natural source of ingredients with high functional value, because this vegetable is rich in compounds that provide benefits for human health,” says Vanesa Benítez, a researcher at the Department of Agricultural Chemistry at the Autonomous University of Madrid (Spain).
It really is amazing, but in industry surely it is a case of follow the dollar. If you are manufacturing something, which leaves you with a waste product, then you will do your best to find a way of making a buck out of it!
Take the local saw mill as an example. When the saws are active they will leave behind sawdust.
Sawdust is composed of fine particles of wood. This material is produced from cutting with a saw, hence its name. It has a variety of practical uses, including serving as mulch, or as an alternative to clay cat litter, or as a fuel, or for the manufacture of particleboard. Until the advent of refrigeration, it was often used in icehouses to keep ice frozen during the summer. Historically, it has been treated as a by-product of manufacturing industries and can easily be understood to be more of a hazard, especially in terms of its flammability. It has also been used in artistic displays and as scatter. It is also sometimes used in bars in order to soak up spills, allowing the spill to be easily swept out the door. Perhaps the most interesting application of sawdust is in pykrete, a slow-melting, much stronger ice composed of sawdust and frozen water. It is used to make Cutler’s resin.
Even your friendly butcher can make things, edible things from meat scraps. Nothing need go to waste. Consider sausages and mince meat. Unless it states they are make from ‘prime cuts’, which would be most unusual, they are make from cheaper off-cuts that would not normally sell. Waste is used up to make a profit.
Meat Glue – the industry is exposed.
Restaurants and butchers can now sell their scraps as premium meat. Good way to use them up – and charge premium prices for them too. Best of all, you don’t have to tell the customer. Once the glued meat is cooked, even professional butchers can’t tell the difference.
Even some of your more personal feminine products need careful consideration.
Most tampons are made from rayon-cotton blends — an important distinction, because rayon is often chlorine-bleached, a process that releases the cancer-causing chemical dioxin. This toxin builds up in fatty tissue and has been linked to endometriosis, immune-system suppression, and other health problems. Since it’s in a product intended for our, ahem, most intimate of locations, there’s definitely another reason to be angry. Some companies offer tampons made of organic cotton, which is progress, and we’ve reviewed a few brands below. But tampons still pose a burden on the waste stream and the risk of toxic shock syndrome…
As I began with the family pet, so I will end with them. When it comes to the family pet – scraps of food that you and I may consider waste are perfectly suitable(under careful scrutiny) for their meals.
YES you may well have heard very differently, but you can bet your bottom dollar that was really just a marketing ploy. I can tell you from personal experience that our two dogs have interesting (human food) appetites. One loves fresh salmon and the other adores banana. One likes a rice cracker in her bowl and the other searches for leftover broccoli with gusto! And if an almond or cashew hits the floor by accident, it is gone in an instant!
And if you find yourself in need of love, there are
many homeless ‘best friends’ to be found at
your local RSPCA’s
and animal shelters across the world.