I swear I’m not actively seeking these things out – they just keep appearing! 

The latest is, I grant you, not as silly as the previous two items, but it’s still (in my opinion) a triumph of over engineering and the kind of thinking which is not compatible with a simple, sustainable way of life.   I give you “The Insinkerator”.  Basically, it’s a posh waste disposal unit, and of course they’ve been around for years (standard grumble – they require electricity to run – so that’s another electrical gadget in your house which you don’t need), but what really gets me about this product is the way they’ve chosen to market it.  Statements such as “and then watch as your food waste is washed simply, cleanly and effortlessly away” meaning  “less smelly food waste sitting around in your bin” just send me into orbit. 

The advertising for the Insinkerator says it’s environmentally responsible because it reduces the amount going to landfill. But the stuff in the advert is chopped vegetable matter – now that can go straight on the compost heap.   And if you don’t have a compost heap, you jolly well should, else you’re continually robbing your garden of nutrients without putting anything back (or you end up having to buy in compost to improve your soil.  Madness!).  And if you don’t have a garden or a compost heap, Local Authorities in many areas of the country now provide a container specifically to take food waste. You certainly shouldn’t have to put vegetable waste in the bin which is for the stuff which will be dumped in landfill – vegetable waste is biodegradable, unlike the plastic bag you probably put your waste in. 

And our two-fold obsession in this country – “clean” and “effortless” – yup, keep everything sanitized and try to put minimal energy into anything.  No wonder we’re a nation of obese people susceptible to every virus going!  One of the Insinkerator’s boasts is that it “minimises trips to the dustbin”!!!  Whoa – all that way!!  Gee, thanks!  

I also wonder about what happens to all that ground up waste which goes down the waste pipe.  The advertising literature mentions how food scraps that have gone through the waste disposer can be used as a biogas or biosolid as part of a “holistic waste management approach”.  But presumably, there’s isn’t a holistic approach – the ground up waste just goes into the sewerage system.  Do the water companies provide this “holistic approach”? I don’t know, but I’m willing to be they don’t.

In our household, the kitchen waste either goes to the hens, or the compost heap as appropriate.  It’s about six paces from the sink (via the back door) to the compost heap, and the hens have a little tub in the kitchen for their scraps – which are taken out to them first thing in the morning.  Not exactly tricky.  I would hope that in the main the only thing which goes in our bin is non-recyclable plastic or bits and bobs which are made of composite materials which can’t be separated for recycling.  Indeed, last week the bin men didn’t empty our bin because presumably they thought it was empty (it only had three small bags in it). 

Why do we have to make the simplest things more complicated than they need to be?  On the up side, most adverts nowadays do seem to make me laugh – even though it’s a kind of despairing mirth! 😉