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Composting at Whole Foods

One pound of worms eat a half pound of garbage per day, but they can only do so much. Dairy products (and meat) make the bin smell and attract bugs. Some things, like melon rind, celery, and avocado skin, take so long to break down that they’re not worth the bother. And too much garlic, onion, and citrus can apparently be toxic to the poor worms.

What we need is a regular compost bin, where the temperatures get so high that everything breaks down. But we don’t have space for an outdoor bin. Luckily there are other options around.

The City of Cambridge offers compost drop off at the DPW lot Tuesday and Thursday nights from 4:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. That time frame can be a little tight for us, though.

The DPW has also partnered with the Whole Foods on Prospect Street. We can drop off food waste in the toter at the back of the parking lot every day from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. And unlike our worm bin, this compost can include meat and dairy products—even greasy pizza boxes.

Whole Foods composts way more stuff than our worms do.

They're pretty clear about what can and can't go in, too.

We used to collect our scraps in a pretty Williams Sonoma compost bucket, but it tended to smell and collect flies. So now we use a couple of large Tupperware containers (with tight covers) and store them in the refrigerator. It’s kind of funny when we haven’t gone grocery shopping in a while to look in there and see more garbage than food!


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Time January 4, 2010 at 9:06 pm

[…] Composting at Whole Foods – This has been a lifesaver while our worms bin is infested with flies. […]

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Time April 28, 2010 at 8:32 pm

[…] use our worm bins again—all the scraps building up in our fridge were gross and all the trips to Whole Foods to get rid of them were inconvenient. And I love playing with my wormies.   Leave a […]

Pingback from Friday Green Links – 6/25 « Pragmatic Environmentalism
Time June 25, 2010 at 11:09 pm

[…] Is it worth it to compost in the city? – Slate. Emphatically, yes. We compost with our worms and take what they can’t handle to Whole Foods. […]

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Time August 21, 2010 at 12:10 am

[…] One year ago: Composting at Whole Foods. […]

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