How to

Start a Neighborhood Composting Service

What do these things have in common: bamboo skewers, latex balloons, eggshells, paper coffee filters, hamster bedding, wine corks? 

Give up? It’s a list of things you can compost. That’s right, composting includes more than banana peels and broccoli stalks—way more. 

While you can compost on your own, did you know there are also some great community programs nearby that help whole neighborhoods come together for the betterment of the planet?  


GoZERO is a compost courier service used by a lot of local schools, grocery chains, office buildings and restaurants. They also offer compost stations, where clients open their bins to the community, according to Morgan Comer, GoZERO Sales & Support Manager. 

For example, Sycamore City Schools has a drop-off location that they offer to their community. For $10 a month, individuals receive a 64-gallon bin that they fill up at home and dump back at the station.

“For every 46 pounds of food waste we divert from landfills, it takes one day of driving emissions out of the atmosphere,” Comer says.


Better Bin Compost 

Before starting Better Bin, co-founder Olivia Wilmink was living in an apartment and, like many people, found herself at a crossroads—wanting a less wasteful lifestyle but also committed to the excuse that she didn’t have the time, space or resources to begin composting. 

Even though Better Bin Compost has only been around for a little over a year, they’ve already diverted 6,232 pounds of food waste from landfills. “Better Bin is more than a curbside service,” Olivia says. “I believe our collective efforts can lead to meaningful and measurable impact.”

Currently, Better Bin offers residential pickup services in a number of communities, including Columbia Tusculum, Hyde Park, Oakley and East Walnut Hills to name a few. Olivia adds that anyone interested in their services can submit a request directly on their website.


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