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Fun With BioBags

Way back at the beginning of May, I wrote a post about my plans to purchase some biodegradable bags – specifically, ‘Biobags’. Well, I did end up buying some, and have been having fun testing them out ever since (and even selling them now that I have a composting biz).

Right after the bags arrived I had to go away for a couple weeks, so I decided to put some in a couple of my composters (with food scraps inside them) to see what would happen. Without a doubt, the most dramatic results came from my large indoor worm bin. I filled a doggy-poop Biobag will bean salad and buried it in the middle of the bin – I then added 5 lbs of Red Worms to the bin (the bin was actually set up as a holding bin for the worms while I was away). What exactly happened next I’ll never know for sure, but I do know this – when I arrived home from my trip, not only was the overall level of materials in the bin greatly reduced, but there was also no trace of the Biobag to be found…at least not until several days later, when I finally found one remnant – the knot I had tied at the top, along with the tattered remains of the bag itself.

I think I would have found it more believable if someone had told me the bag had been filled with blood, punctured then lowered into a tank full of man-eating Piranhas!

I guess those worms were hungry! One thing that certainly helped to speed up the break down (or should I say ‘slaughter’?) of the bag was the fact that I added some small holes before burying it. This would not only let some oxygen in, but also the worms. I imagine there were probably some other bag fragments in the bin as well, but I honestly couldn’t find any.

My other Biobag test involved partially burying a full (10 litre) food waste bag in my large outdoor worm composting bin. The results from that test weren’t nearly so dramatic. The bag had clearly degraded a considerable amount by the time I arrived home, but it was still pretty much intact.

I still want to see how long it takes for these bags to totally vanish. Unfortunately I’ve kinda been like a squirrel as of late – burying my treasure, but never keeping track of where and when I buried them!

Anyway – you’ll certainly hear more about my ongoing Biobag testing in the weeks ahead.

[tags]biobags, bioplastic, cornstarch plastic, biodegradable, compost, composting, worm bin, worm composting, vermicomposting[/tags]

Written by Compost Guy on June 30th, 2008 with no comments.
Read more articles on Bioplastics and Worm Composting.

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