If you love snacking on cheese or you are a big fan of certain cheese brands, then you should have cheese wax that you have probably been disposing of improperly. Cheese wax is a mixture of microcrystalline and paraffin, and both are petroleum-based. Cheese wax may take as long as 450 years to decompose; therefore, adding it to your pile is not advisable. On the other hand, letting it sit in a landfill for years shouldn’t be an option as well. So what then? How can you compost cheese wax, seeing that it may take as long as 450 years to break down properly?
All products are biodegradable. This means that they will break down at some point. The key consideration, however, is how long it might take for it to break down properly. Owing to the length of time it will take for cheese wax to decompose, I personally do NOT advise to compost it.
Instead of disposing of it immediately, there are specific ways you can reuse cheese wax. In this article, we will explore each one of them. In addition to this, this article would also explore other cheese-related questions. Read on!
Is Cheese good for you?
Yes, cheese is good for your health, and now there’s science to back it up.
Cheese can reduce the risk of having a heart disease
According to a study, cheese can cut down your heart disease risk. The researchers analyzed results from 31 reviews. It compared the number of dairy products people ate to whether or not they developed cardiovascular disease. It found that eating two ounces of cheese daily reduces the risk of having a heart disease to about 18 percent.
Cheese can make you stronger
Eating cheese can also make you stronger. According to another research, which was published in 2014, eating a cup of ricotta cheese each day for 12 weeks will improve balance and build muscle mass in healthy adults over the age of 60.
Cheese can reduce the risk of diabetes
According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Institution, eating almost two ounces of cheese can lower your risk of developing diabetes by a staggering eight percent. What’s more? Another study conducted on women in Sweden also found that eating a little under 2 ounces of cheese lowered the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Cheese is an excellent source of calcium
Calcium is a necessary mineral for bone health and development. Calcium helps in the mineralization of bones. It helps to stave off bone leads to osteoporosis and stress fractures. What’s more? It also helps to regulate muscle contractions and heart function.
Other research has found that eating cheese can also lower the rates of stroke and death compared to those who do not eat it. This is because full-fat cheese is rich in calcium, vitamin A and B-12, linoleic acids, zinc, and compounds that fight inflammation, reduce body fat, and promote artery health.
More importantly, like most things, moderation is key to getting the full benefits of eating cheese.
Adverse effects of eating cheese
Cheese can also be bad for your health. As with all other things, cheese, when taken in large proportion, may cause havoc to your body.
Some of the adverse effects associated with eating a lot of cheese is an increase in cholesterol level and the risk of obesity. Excess cheese can also slow down liver function, thereby increasing toxicity, which can damage tissue contributing to an ailment such as cancer. Some studies have also linked excess consumption of cheese to Alzheimer’s disease.
A high cheese diet also has immediate side effects. It can give you a headache and digestive problems or leave you feeling sluggish.
Is cheese compostable?
Almost all food will break down in your compost heap, and cheese is not excluded; however, specific guidelines need to be followed before you add it to your pile.
Can I add cheese to my compost pile?
No, cheese shouldn’t be added to your compost pile. Although it is compostable, adding cheese to your home composting setting is equivalent to sending an open invitation for rodents to invade your pile. As it rots, the cheese will emit a small that will attract garden pests to your heap. On the other hand, commercial composting settings will accept cheese.
How do I compost cheese?
If you throw away cheese regularly, then you might want to consider these options that will aid composting. While composting cheese isn’t advisable, these guidelines, if adhered to, will ensure that rodents do not find their way to your bin.
Get a bigger compost bin
Bigger compost pile will build up more heat at the center of the composting mass, and this heat can kill any pathogens resulting from cheese. Therefore getting a bigger bin is paramount to this process. Your bin needs to be at least a square meter.
Break into small pieces
Cheese should be broken into smaller chunks to speed up the decomposition process. Smaller pieces will ensure that it decomposes faster and avoid anaerobic conditions.
Make use of gloves
Because cheese and dairy products have a higher risk of pathogens, using gloves before composting is very important.
Bury cheese at the center of the compost pile
Ensure that moldy or spoiled cheese is buried at the center of the heap on top of brown materials. They will act as a bulking agent and prevent any leakage. Also, make sure that the buried cheese is covered with a thick layer of dry, brown leaves to filter smells.
Mix with brown materials
Each time you add cheese to your pile, ensure that brown materials are also added. Brown material will help to absorb anything that can leach out of your pile.
Aerate your pile regularly
Aerating your pile regularly should be non-negotiable. Your pile should be turned frequently to speed up the composting process and avoid anaerobic bacteria from building up.
If you use a compost bin instead of an open pile, ensure that the bin is tight and can contain odors. Check that it has proper aerating features that will prevent the activity of anaerobic bacteria and bring fresh oxygen. Make sure your compost bin is designed in a way that will keep rodents out. Finally, make sure they are insulated to generate the heat needed to break down proteins.
Why does cheese emanate a rotting odor when added to the compost pile?
The reason for the foul smell that emanates from your compost heap rests solely on the type of bacteria. First off, two major types of bacteria can be present in compost. The first is aerobic bacteria, and the second is anaerobic bacteria. Aerobic bacteria carry out most of the work in a compost pile; however, the bacteria that thrive on cheese are anaerobic — the difference between these two types of bacteria in the process of energy generation.
Aerobic bacteria require oxygen to digest waste and nitrogen to produce proteins they can grow. This type of bacteria obtain energy from organic materials and produce heat as a byproduct of their reproduction and growth. In turn, this heat accelerates the activity of other bacteria.
Anaerobic bacteria, on the other hand, grow in areas without sufficient fresh air. Anaerobic bacteria generate energy by breaking down proteins. Unlike aerobic bacteria, anaerobic bacteria don’t produce enough heat. The byproduct it emanates is responsible for the foul stink that emanates from the pile. In turn, this smell will attract rodents that you will do well to avoid.
Is ALL cheese wax compostable?
All foods, products, and ingredients will break at some point. However, some may take as long as 600 years to break down completely. Wax can take between 70-400 years to decompose, so it is not advisable to add it to your compost pile.
However, instead of being discarded immediately after use, wax can be reused to as a fire starter, it can also be used to seal bottles or jars, it can be molded into different shapes to practice drawing objects, it can also be used to coat your hard cheese.
To reuse cheese wax, ensure there is no cheese left on it. Once clean, melt it down in a double boiler, then pour it on a surface to cool. You can roll the cooled wax into balls and store in a glass jar.
Can you eat the wax on a babybel?
Wax on babybel should not be eaten; however, if it is mistakenly consumed, it will not cause any harmful side effects. The wax on a babybel is composed of a low percentage of Polyethylene, microcrystalline wax, and paraffin wax. The color of dye applies varies according to the flavor. Yellow flavor contains yellow dye, and red flavor contains red dye, etc.
Since it meets all of the U.S Food and Drug Administration requirements in regards to wax that contacts food, the wax on babybel is recognized as generally safe for consumption. Finally, the wrapper on the outside of each piece is made from cellophane, so you have nothing to worry about.