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Cultivating Community Composting Forum and Workshop Bring Composters Together

Date: 16 Feb 2016 | posted in: Composting, waste - composting, Waste to Wealth | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

ILSR and BioCycle magazine teamed up for the National Cultivating Community Composting Forum at the US Composting Council’s International Conference & Trade Show January 25-28, 2016, in Jacksonville, Florida.

More than 70 community composters from all over the US gathered in Jacksonville to discuss best practices for community composting. From bike pedallers to urban farmers and local public works and sanitation departments, experts and entrepreneurs brainstormed ways to make their businesses and organizations more effective and efficient in recovering compostable materials from the waste stream at the community level.


Moderated by Brenda Platt of ILSR, this half-day workshop featured community composters sharing their best practices in a peer-to-peer format. Topics included: creative financing, operator training, food scrap collection, equipment and small-scale systems, outreach and communications, cooperative structures, volunteer management, and best management practices for the compost process. Our goal was for participants to learn about other initiatives and how to adapt lessons learned to their projects.




In collaboration with the US Composting Council (USCC) and BioCycle, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance held this Forum in conjunction with the USCC’s International Conference and Trade Show, #COMPOST2016,  in Jacksonville, Florida. This was the first time the USCC’s annual conference featured Pechu Kucha-style lightning presentations followed by interactive panels of responders to spark dialogue. Community composters presented on three core topics: equipment needs, collaboration with commercial haulers and sites, and government-supported programs.

The first session featured innovative strategies to grow community composting – from the NYC Compost Project to DC’s Department of Parks and Recreation, best management practices, and why local and state government should care about community composting. The second session focused on why equipment manufacturers, commercial food waste haulers, and commercial composters should care about community composting.


Why Local Government Should Support Community Composting:

Community Composting: Why You Should Care:

Why Equipment Manufacturers Should Support Community Composting:

Why Commercial Haulers & Composters Should Support Community Composting

Links to community composter blogs and other articles:

Dustin Fedako, “A Composter’s Dream” Compost Pedallers

Jorge Montezuma, “COMPOST2016: Community Composting & ReFED” (2/3/16) Soil Masons

Andrea Carter, The Falmouth Enterprise (2/6/16) Local Composter Represents Community At National Compost 2016 Conference: article featuring Mary Bunker Ryther and Compost With Me

Peter Moon, O2 Compost Winter 2016 newsletter Food Waste Collection, Composting and Urban Farming