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I have been told by a friend that emptying shredded paper into the compost is a bad thing because of all the toxins in the ink. Anyone got views on this?


I've not had any problems, I think any toxins remaining would be in minute quantities after mixing with green waste and composting. Don't some inks derive from plant products? If you were worried, you could just not use it where edible crops are grown.

It's OK with modern inks and paper is very good for balancing the nitrogen and carbon content of your compost heap. 

Glad to hear that as we were thinking of putting our shreddings in with the compost.


Obelixx is right, the sort of inks which used to contain toxins were banned decades ago - they were causing cancers in print workers.  I try and limit the amount of really glossy paper though as that is often coated with a type of clay (Kaolin, "China clay") and doesn't break down easily.  Besides, I have enough clay in my garden thanks!


Paper is a good addition to the compost heap.  You can also use it to line troughs and baskets for a season.  I used to use it as a water retentive measure in planters in hot summers............anyone remember those

Good at the bottom of runner nean trenches too.

Good at the bottom of runner bean trenches too.


I agree with Obelixx, the ink is no longer toxic


am a great believer in using newspapers .. when planting something new I always dig hole then soak paper & plant.. really good feed....done it for many many years ..

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