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26 January 2011

Outside bin - problems & solutions

Most of the germs that can be found in decaying foodstuffs and other discarded organic matter can be found in the outside rubbish bin.

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The outside bin - why it could be a problem

Like death and taxes, there is one more certainty to life - rubbish the world over smells the same. Strangely comforting if you find yourself far away from home. 

But, let's face it, the outside rubbish bin is not the most romantic item in the garden. Most of the germs that can be found in decaying foodstuffs and other discarded organic matter can be found in the outside rubbish bin. These include the bacteria that can cause food poisoning, such as Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes and Campylobacter jejuni.

If bins are left open, pests, like flies, cockroaches, rats and mice – all of which can spread disease – may target them. And if a bin is not regularly emptied, it can become the source of unpleasant smells.

Cleaning the outside bin

Invest in a good, strong rubbish bin with a lid. In South Africa, these can be obtained from local municipalities. Municipalities empty these rubbish bins regularly – at least once a week. Always use refuse bags, which you tie up before removing them, to avoid food waste spilling into the bin. Even with a liner, bins get dirty. So, clean them out with hot water and strong household detergent at regular intervals.

Handy hint:
Don’t place your rubbish bin too close to your back door – this may attract flies and blue bottles to your kitchen and be in too close proximity to your children's playing areas.

The outside ambience

 
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