Organics

Composting yard debris and food scraps with Waste Connections reduces waste in our landfill and creates nutrient-rich fertilizer. This service is currently offered to residents within the city limits of Vancouver and Ridgefield.

Organics Service

Organics is an optional service that is currently available for residents within the city limits of Vancouver and Ridgefield. Residents who already have yard debris service can simply add food scraps to their existing cart. If you aren’t signed up yet for yard debris or organics service, contact us to sign up!

 

Ridgefield Reminders

The organics program is coming to the City of Ridgefield! Here’s what to expect:

  • Please keep your current cart unless you would prefer a smaller cart.
  • During the week of March 29, you will receive a brochure in the
    mail with instructions for food scrap collection and helpful tips
    for maintaining your organics cart. Please keep this information for reference. This information is also provided below.
  • During the week of April 5, you can begin to add food scraps to
    your organics cart.
  • Beginning the week of April 12, put your organics cart at the curb
    with yard debris and food scraps on your regular service day.

Please note: By collecting food scraps, you are helping to keep food out of the
landfill and create valuable compost. However, collecting food scraps
may not be for every household, and that’s okay. Collecting food scraps is optional. If you choose not to add food scraps, please continue using your cart for yard debris.

Service Options & Rates

Organics is an every-other-week service. Four convenient cart sizes are available: 20-gallon, 32-gallon, 64-gallon, and 96-gallon. Click here to view current rates.

 

Extras

Any additional yard debris above  your normal Organics service level will be billed as extra yard debris. For public health reasons, all food waste must be contained within your Organics cart and must not be included in any extra yard debris placed out. Extra yard debris can be placed in a Kraft paper bag, spare can or bundled at the curb. Loose yard debris cannot be collected at the curb.

FAQ’s

Where is this service currently available?

Organics service is available to single-family residential households within the city limits of Vancouver and Ridgefield. If you are unsure if you’re in the City of Vancouver limits, please reference the City of Vancouver Limits Map.  

How do I sign up?

Contact us to sign up for the organics program. A customer service representative will help you through the process.

Why is diverting my food scraps and yard debris a good idea?

First, you might save money! Separating out food scraps and yard debris from your garbage may help reduce the amount of garbage your household generates, therefore potentially reducing your garbage costs.

Second, you’ll be helping the environment. When food scraps and yard debris end up in the landfill, they decompose and produce methane (a greenhouse gas). However, when food scraps and yard debris are collected and sent to a compost facility, they become a valuable soil amendment that will return nutrients back to the environment.

Do I have to collect both food scraps and yard debris?

No, you do not have to collect both food scraps and yard debris! You can choose to collect only food scraps, or only yard debris.

Some households might not have yards or gardens and won’t produce any yard debris. That is perfectly alright! You can still participate by collecting food scraps.

On the other hand, some households might not want to collect food scraps but want to collect yard debris. For these households, collecting yard debris only is certainly acceptable.

What happens to the organics collected in this program?

The yard debris and food scraps collected from homes will be collected and taken to West Vancouver Materials Recovery Facility where it is reloaded and trucked to Dirt Hugger, a commercial composting facility in Dallesport, WA. 

How do I collect food scraps in the kitchen?

Keep a container in the kitchen to collect food scraps, then transport and empty this into your organics cart when ready. Please do NOT set out a kitchen food scraps container for curbside service.

You can keep this container on your kitchen counter or you can hide it away in a cabinet or under the sink. You might also consider placing the container in your refrigerator or freezer in order to cut down on smells.

There are many types of containers that are suitable for collecting food scraps in the kitchen. We suggest using a durable container with a lid to keep odors at bay. Here are some ideas:

  • You can buy a kitchen compost container through many local stores or online.
  • You can repurpose something you might already have, such as a large food storage container (think Tupperware).
  • You can reuse any number of durable items, like large empty yogurt containers, hard plastic take-out containers, plastic coffee canisters, etc.

Whichever container you choose, make sure to empty and clean it regularly. You can use soap and water, or your favorite green cleaning method such as a 50:50 mixture of water and white vinegar.

Should I use a liner bag for my kitchen compost container?

No, in fact our composting facility prefers you not use liners at all. If you choose to use a compostable bag for your pail, please be sure that it is BPI or ASTM 6400 certified. These certifications should be printed on the box or included in the product description.

Can't I just use my in-sink garbage disposal to dispose of food scraps?

Garbage disposals aren’t meant to handle large amounts of food. Sending food solids into the sewer puts added stress on the sewer system and those solids must then be removed later. Grease, fats, and oils are especially harmful and should be disposed as garbage. Give our sewer system a break and compost your food scraps instead!

Are there any limitations on how full the cart can be?

Organics carts, like all other cart services, should not be overflowing. Please ensure that the lid of your cart remains closed.

For the safety of our drivers and the smooth operation of our equipment, we also enforce limits on the weight of carts. For 64-gallon carts the maximum weight is 130 pounds. For 90- or 96-gallon carts, the maximum weight is 200 pounds.