HomeThe CSWD BlogFood WasteNow is the perfect time to start composting

Now is the perfect time to start composting

I have to admit something.

Turkey is bland.

I’ve always thought so, but I would still always put it on my plate because…it’s Thanksgiving! Then I’d stuff myself on everything else and the turkey would be the one thing left behind. Thanksgiving is filled with tradition of over-filling your plate, after all, even if it’s with something you don’t really like.

Photo courtesy of thememo.com

But that tradition can leave a lot of turkey on the table—or worse, in the trash (along with turnip, or mashed potatoes, or whatever your thing is). Now we don’t want to mess with Thanksgiving tradition here, but I’m sure that we can figure out a better way.

Did you know that instead of wasting food in with the garbage, you could actually drop it off for composting instead?

Maybe you’ve seen the food scrap carts at our facilities, but weren’t quite sure how to get started with it. Or, maybe you felt that you wouldn’t have enough food scraps to compost. Well, if you expect some guests to end up with a plateful of holiday leftovers, this day is the PERFECT time to give it a try!

Why bother?

Last year, the average Chittenden County resident threw over 150 pounds of food scraps in the trash, where its value was wasted. That’s like a whole adult person worth of food!

Composting keeps all of that organic matter out of the landfill and gives it new life on lawns & gardens in our community. When organic materials like food scraps and yard debris decompose in the wild, they produce a soil amendment that is full of nutrients for gardens and plants.

What is drop-off composting?

Some of my neighbors have a compost bin or pile in their backyard. They toss in all of their food scraps, along with some paper items, and a bunch of leaves (compost needs a lot of carbon – leaves – to break down efficiently).

Maybe you don’t have the space, time, or leaves you need to manage a compost pile effectively. And that’s totally ok! Our drop-off composting program was created just for you. We have 8 locations around Chittenden County where you can bring your food scraps: all of our Drop-Off Centers, plus Green Mountain Compost in Williston). We’ll even give you a countertop pail and a 4-gallon green bucket to get started!

You don’t need to watch your friends & family scrape their plates into the landfill. Instead, let them scrape their plates into wicked good compost – courtesy of our drop-off composting program.


How can I start?

Just pick up a 1-gallon kitchen pail and 4-gallon drop-off bucket (available for no cost to Chittenden County residents), and start collecting your spoiled turkey, mashed potatoes, and other food scraps at home! You can bring your food scraps to Green Mountain Compost (no charge for up to 30 gallons) or any CSWD Drop-Off Center (no charge if you’re also bringing trash).

For easy cleaning, line your container with newspaper or a used paper bag. Be sure to read through our items accepted for drop-off composting. If it’s edible, we can compost it! Uncoated paper, cardboard and yard debris can also go into compost. Then, be sure to tell your guests ahead of time to put their food scraps into your container.

Want someone to pick up your food scraps? No Waste Compost and Earthgirl Composting also provide curbside pickup of food scraps in certain areas.

Practice makes…easy.

Practice your composting now to get a good start on what will soon be required by state law. You’ve been collecting glass bottles and metal cans separately for years—start doing the same for food scraps, and pretty soon you’ll forget that life was ever different!

Under Act 148: Universal Recycling and Composting Law, all food scraps will be banned from landfills in Vermont by 2020. Under the same law, haulers offering curbside trash collection must also offer collection of food scraps by July 1, 2018. If you have a hauler that picks up your trash & recycling, give them a call and ask them when they’ll be ready to pick up your food scraps, too!

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