Blog post A The Banana

Organic waste is an unavoidable by-product of many human activities,thorough out our day-to-day activities, So can my unavoidable waste actually be avoided. I have conducted an audit of my daily wastage habits in order to answer whether or not as humans have we become a ‘throw-away society’

By definition A waste audit is a process of analysing waste composition. An audit determines the proportions of different materials in a waste stream, their volume and weight, and the source of the waste. In order for me to interpret this definition into my own lifestyle, I decided to analysis the dumping ground in which the majority of my organic waste  will end up in a  garbage Bin located in the kitchen of my family’s home , in which being a communal space in which myself in the demographic of my early 20s, and my parents in their early 50s all share I found by reflecting on my families habits as well as my own, by watching my families interactions with the bin how did they physical interact with the bin were they withdrawn from the process,also up turning my garbage bin and sorting through the organic waste in which I found a lot of banana peels.

I found a lot of banana peels in fact I decided to audit all my bananas over a space of a week and decided to weigh these peels, on average I eat around 1.5 bananas a day.I found this out  whilst reflecting on an image I had taken of a banana from my days audit, in which on this particular day I had eaten two bananas. but the realisation in which came across whilst visually analysing images from audit was how little of the banana I was actually consuming, as every day repeated mindless actions of preparing my banana for consumption repeated these actions pealing skin of the banana chopping off the ends scraping out the brown imperfections until I had and warped the shape of my banana into an entire new shape, whilst believing that I had tricked myself into thinking that I had perfected my banana that it can now be consumed. The mindless actions of  scraping the skin,ends and  imperfect pieces not once was thought is given to what impact the pieces will have on land fills the only thought is if the banana will taste good and how will it be incorporated in my daily meal plan. I audited every banana I consumed over a space of a week.I started with a bunch of bananas that weighed 1.8 kilograms, by the end of the week  I was left with a pile of waste that weighed 1 kilogram, and i had enough left over pieces of bananas that made up an entire banana, that i was mindlessly throwing into landfills each week!

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The starting bunch, my weekly average of banana’s in which I consume over a course of a week, this bunch weight 1.8kg.

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“peels use them, don’t lose them”(sustainable america ).

My weeks worth of Banana waste! with a weight of 1 kg, being a fashion student i like to work with large amounts of materials

So what is a banana?, is an edible fruit, botanically a berry, in which are a healthy and nutritious food containing potassium ,Vitamin C,vitamin B6, folate,niacin and riboflavin.They have a low GI rating and give a sustained energy boost. Bananas are Australia’s number one selling supermarket product not only out selling every other fruit and vegetable but also includes every other supermarket product,as a result on average more than 5 million bananas are eaten every day in Australia.

But more than 100,000 tonnes of Queensland bananas go to waste every year because the fruit does not meet cosmetic retail standards “bananas that don’t meet the grading overwhelming are put in a chopper and chopped into little pieces and are spread over the plantation as organic matter”(Tony Heridrich, 2010 ). Could this be a result by the fact most Australians have lost the direct connection to a time in which we  had a connection to somebody in the community who had a farm and understood farming was not an exact science and production of bananas are not made in a factory. Which poses the question why are we more obsessed with how the banana looks, rather than how it ends up, is because we become a throw away society a term used to describe societies overconsumption and excessive production of short-lived or disposable items.

“We live in a disposable society. It’s easier to throw things out than to fix them. We even give it a name we call it recycling (Neil LaBute).”

1 most banana growth happens 30 degrees south of the equator,with 95 of Australians banana production is in North Queensland other production areas are in South East Queensland, northern New south Wales, Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

2 All fresh bananas available in Australia are grown in Australia-there are no fresh banana imports because of the disease threat 

3  Whilst harvest of bananas still process green, they travel long distances in refrigerated vehicles

4 To “ripening rooms” where they are exposed to ethylene gas

5 shipped to grocery stores

6 Purchased in our weekly grocery shop and transported to our homes, where 25% are thrown away and end up in landfills and “12% of a bananas weight is the peel”(Sustainable America, 2016 ).

7 Instead we could be using peels in a number of ways for example in compost as they add nutrition, unlike if they were to end up in landfills,the would help “omit the potent greenhouse gas methane that can pollute waterways”(EPA, 2015).

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Enough left banana waste to make a whole new banana!

referencing;

Australian Banana Grower’s council. (2016). Australian Banana Grower’s council. [online] Available at: <http://abgc.org.au&gt;.[Accessed 26 May. 2016].

Epa.nsw.gov.au. (2016). NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA). [online] Available at: <http://epa.nsw.gov.au&gt; [Accessed 26 May. 2016].

Suez-environment.com. (2016). [online] Available at: <http://Suez-environment.com&gt;. [Accessed 8 Jun. 2016].

Sustainable America. (2016). Sustainable America. [online] Available at: <http://Sustainableamerica.org&gt;. [Accessed 26 May. 2016].

Wright, B. (2015). Mushables. [Image] Available at: <http://Wrightkitchen.com/prints&gt;.[Accessed 8 Jun. 2016].

 

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