More Compost Haulers Needed as Interest in Composting Increases

The need for compost haulers is increasing as restaurants gain interest in sending their food waste to composting facilities instead of landfills. Rather than taking up landfill space, food waste generated in restaurants can be collected and transported to commercial composting facilities where it can break down to become fertile soil.

Many cities are implementing voluntary compost programs, while others have passed laws that mandate composting. San Francisco moved quickly from its pilot composting program in 1996 to its city-wide voluntary program in 2001. In 2009, the city implemented its mandatory program that has resulted in the collection of 835,000 tons of food scraps since 1996. With more and more cities adopting composting programs, the need for compost haulers is increasing. Companies like EcoMovement in New Hampshire and Compost Cab in Washington, D.C., have responded to this need and have begun hauling food waste from restaurants and farms.

Many restaurant owners are realizing that dumping food waste into a container picked up by a compost hauler requires no more effort than dumping the food waste into a container picked up by a garbage hauler. The difference is found in the end result. Composted food waste becomes a useful product and slows the growth of landfills. On the other hand, food waste thrown into the garbage takes up space in landfills and is never put to good use. Also, by composting food waste, some restaurants have been able to reduce garbage pickup service, which offsets any cost of a compost program.

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“Companies remove restaurants' food waste by composting it”

April 22, 2011

USA Today

By Kelly DiNardo for The Associated Press


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