A Guide To Workplace Composting

A Guide To Workplace Composting

 

Did you know, the United States leads the world in food waste? On average, about 38 million tons of food is wasted every year, which translates to nearly a quarter of the waste in landfill. Composting is a great approach for businesses who are looking to save valuable resources and money. The next time you go to throw away your bruised banana or your half-eaten sandwich, think about how composting can benefit your business and your community. To give you the full run-down on composting, we’ve put together a guide that answers the most common composting questions and provides tips to help you get started right away. Read on to learn more!

Accepted Materials

Vegetable Pieces, Coffee Grounds, Tea Leaves, Food Scraps, Fruit Peels, Waxed Cardboard, Clean Paper Towels and Napkins, Flowers and Plants are all accepted materials.

Unaccepted Materials

Styrofoam, Tea Bags, Glossy and Coated Paper, Old Paper Towels, Large Branches, Glass, Plastic, Animal / Human Waste & Recyclables. Be careful with Meat, Fish, Eggs and Oily Foods that may attract pests.

Why Is Composting Important?

 

Environmental Benefits
Can you believe that the average person generates about 4.6 pounds of food each day? Currently, the U.S. is wasting three times more food than in the 1960's, but only about 5% is diverted from landfill (According to the EPA). When materials are composted, it reduces methane gases, creates nutrient-based soil as well as sends less waste to landfill.


Business Benefits
If your business throws away a lot of food, you likely have large and heavy waste containers. Composting allows your business to divert waste from these heavy containers, allowing you to save a significant amount of money on waste costs.

 

Frequently Asked Questions...

 

SHOULD I USE COMPOSTABLE BAGS FOR COLLECTING ITEMS?
Yes! They help prevent messes and make the process easier.

DOES COMPOSTING ATTRACT PESTS?

There are steps you can take to avoid attracting pests. For example, avoid composting meats and oily foods. Also, place a lid on top of your bin to keep pests out.

IS COMPOSTING TIME CONSUMING?
Nope! Instead of throwing your scraps into your waste bin, you can toss them into your compost bin instead.

WHAT ARE THE ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS OF COMPOSTING?

Composting is a natural way to provide nutrients to soil. It also reduces waste in landfills and reduces methane gas.

HOW DO I CONTAIN THE SMELL?
Put a lid on it to block the smell!

HOW LONG DOES COMPOSTING TAKE?

It can take anywhere from 1 month to 2 years depending on how well your pile is managed.

 

Tips For Starting a Successful Composting Program:

Signage

Place a list or image on your bin clearly outlining what materials can be composted. It encourages participation and keeps the wrong materials out of the bin!

Training

Going over accepted materials, unaccepted materials, how to compost and best practices for doing so is the best way to get employee buy-in.

Location

Place your compost bin where your organics are produced, like in the kitchen or break-room. This will make composting convenient and promote more participation.

Green Team

You may want to elect a 'Green Team' who is responsible for analyzing the success of the program, suggest improvements and encourage employees to get involved.

Tracking

Reflecting and tracking the success of your compost program keeps employees motivated and allows you to assess any improvements that need made!

Whether you own a restaurant that produces a lot of food waste, a university with a large cafeteria or an office space who is just looking to divert waste from landfill, your business can benefit from composting. If your business currently composts, we'd love to hear how your program is going. Let us know in the comments below, or if you're interested in getting started, get it touch with us. One of our recycling experts will get back to you right away. Thanks for stopping by!