Back to Basics: How we have managed to produce zero waste

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Our columnist Lydia Harvey's challenge to stop shopping at the supermarket has completely changed the life of her and her family. Not only are they growing produce out of their backyard they're also reducing their waste and learning to recycle what they use. 

Gardening with Lydia's children.

Gardening with Lydia's children.

Source: 1 NEWS

One of the biggest changes we feel has happened since taking up our challenge this year, besides a massive lifestyle change, is the changes we've made to our environment.

I wouldn't say our waste is non-existent, but since we've stopped shopping at the supermarket it's reduced significantly.

A huge part of how we are achieving this is through eating food that we have grown, that is in season or we've sourced locally.

Doing this we have drastically reduced our waste in regards to packaging, food mileage and factory emissions.

The Harveys compost their food scraps to lower to reduce their waste.

The Harveys compost their food scraps to lower to reduce their waste.

Source: 1 NEWS

We're pretty lucky that where we live the local market is happy to refill our containers, baskets and jars which helps reduce the amount of rubbish such as plastic bags we would otherwise accumulate shopping at the supermarket.

In the form of food waste, we have a zero food to landfill policy.

This means that left over meals get used for dinner the next day - usually in a pastry filling.

All other food waste goes in one of our three composting systems for standard food scraps which consist of a worm farm, a general compost bin and scraps for the chickens.

Lydia's sons with their chickens.

Lydia's sons with their chickens.

Source: 1 NEWS

Useful scraps such as egg shells are dried out for the kids to break up and spread across the garden to stop snails eating baby greens, while we turn apple cores into vinegar for bottling.

Our milk comes from a local farmer which we collect in glass jars and we use Morse bags if we purchase anything from local markets.

By opting out of the supermarket, we have seen a change in how we look at what we’re using and this has flowed over into other areas of our life.

By opting out we have gained a little more of our consumerism power back.

From Lydia’s Garden – Homemade Muesli


Lydia’s scrumptious and simple recipe for homemade muesli will get your mouth watering and have you longing for breakfast.

Lydia's homemade muesli.

Lydia's homemade muesli.

Source: 1 NEWS

3 cups rolled oats
¾ cup shredded coconut
zest of 2 oranges
Fresh juice from 2 oranges
2 tbsp. of brown sugar
2 lines of Whittaker’s dark chocolate chopped

Combine the rolled oats, coconut, zest, sugar and orange juice into a large roasting dish and toast for 5-10 minutes in the oven.

Remove for the oven and cool.

Once cool add favourite combination of seeds and nuts. For me I use seeds, goji berry, crushed peanuts, dried fruit peel and chopped up chocolate to the mix.

Serve with yoghurt and your favourite fruit.

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