Orange Peels Can Regrow Forests

This is why trucks full of orange peels were able to regrow Costa Rica's forests.

Everyone knows oranges are a great source of vitamins, but did you know that the peels can help improve soil in nutrient-poor areas?

In 1996, Costa Rican juice company, Del Oro was persuaded to donate part of its forested land. In return, they could dump its orange peel waste on deforested parkland at no cost. Over 12,000 metric tons of orange peels were dumped on the nutrient-poor land.

Another Costa Rican juice company sued Del Oro for desecrating a national park and the deal was scrapped. The land covered by the orange peels lay forgotten for 15 years. In 2013, Timothy Treuer, a student from Princeton, conducted a follow-up study to see what happened to the land.

"It was so completely overgrown with trees and vines, I couldn't even see the sign marking the site," he said. It took Treuer a week to find the location, meaning the orange peels revitalized the site, allowing nature to take its rightful place.

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