The Composting Collaborative
We bring the compost supply chain together
The Composting Collaborative united composters, consumer-facing businesses, and policymakers to share best practices, resources, and generate innovative solutions to shared challenges. The mission was to accelerate composting access and infrastructure to improve soil health and divert compostables from landfill.
The Composting Collaborative was hatched after recognition that actors in the composting space are incredibly passionate, but often work in a siloed manner that could benefit from cross-pollination. For effective organics recycling, active participation from households, retailers, and manufacturers are necessary to create clean feedstocks and support from the public and private sector is needed to make the business cases of compost manufacturers work well. As more city, municipal, and state organics recycling programs come on-line, we understand that collaboration will be key in scaling composting nationwide.
Who is involved
Founded by GreenBlue, BioCycle Magazine, and the US Composting Council with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as an advisor, the Composting Collaborative brings stakeholders from across the compost supply chain together. We work with compost manufacturers and haulers, food waste and compostables generators, compostable packaging and resin producers, as well as compost end users. Collaborative members also include cities and municipalities, higher-ed institutions, and policy stakeholders.
What the Collaborative is doing
The Collaborative is undertaking three major areas of work relating to different priorities in the composting space. Founding partner GreenBlue is leading an exploration of pretreatment systems for organics that will culminate in a decision-making guide for if and how food waste generators should employ technologies like biodigesters, dehydrators, and accelerated composting systems. Read more about the Composting Collaborative’s Pretreatment Directory here. Founding partner BioCycle is conducting the industry’s first assessment of state-level processing capacity since 2013 and compiling granular information ranging from volume to feedstock type. Compost sampling protocol is the target of founding partner US Composting Council to ensure that compost manufacturers are able get accurate results of testing to best market and direct compost to its best-suited application.
On an ongoing basis, the Composting Collaborative also hosts a monthly webinar series highlighting the work of difference-makers in the composting community covering a range of issues. Twice a year, the Collaborative convenes for in-person dialogues punctuated by periodic meetings and dinners at other industry events. The Collaborative also curates a library of resources on policy, collection programs, contamination reduction, and end markets, among others.
Overview of Composting Collaborative meetings:
November 2016 Dialogue
Washington, DC – The Collaborative’s kick-off meeting in our nation’s capital provided a full day forum for composting stakeholders to meet and brainstorm work that would best maximize the unique qualities of groups that the Composting Collaborative brings together. The course for the Collaborative’s future work was set and critical stakeholders yet to be engaged were identified.
January 2017 Dialogue
Los Angeles, CA – In January, the Composting Collaborative convened at the US Composting Council’s annual conference. Attendees hashed out and prioritized the project ideas fashioned in the November meeting. With a couple top contenders in hand, attendees volunteered resources and time to get work off the ground.
April 2017 Dialogue
Baltimore, MD – Co-located with BioCycle’s Spring conference, the Collaborative got together for a series of flash talks and panel speakers exploring topics of interest relating to potential project work. Zeroing in on growing end markets, as well as defining pretreatment and accelerated composting systems, energetic discussion cemented the topics as definite areas of work and informed the direction of the Collaborative’s first identified projects.