Nera TanningUniversity of ZeologyWhat is the difference between ‘biodegrading’ and ‘composting’?

What is the difference between ‘biodegrading’ and ‘composting’?

Biodegradation passes through 3 stages:

  • Biodeterioration (e.g., black spots on bananas – surface breakdown)
  • Biodisintegration (e.g., the banana becomes soft due to bacterial breakdown, material breaks into smaller pieces)
  • Bioassimilation (e.g., the banana is broken into compost mass, taken into biomass – also called ultimate biodegradability).

Compostability is a specific case of a biodegradation process and mainly covers the first two stages of biodegradation as seen in the graph.

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