By the Compost for Good team: John Culpepper, Katie Culpepper, and Jennifer Perry
The Compost for Good project is promoting community composting within the Adirondack Park and beyond. Through our work with AdkAction, we are working to connect people who want to compost with the composting systems that will work for them. One composting option that is newer to our area is commercial composters with the capacity to take on more food waste.
Blue Line Compost is one such local commercial composter that is providing solutions to residences and businesses within the park and in turn working to decrease reliance on landfills, to support the local food system, and to build our Adirondack soils.
Bill Domenico, co-founder of Blue Line Compost LLC, shared some of the details about his composting work together with Carter Rowley:
Monday is collection day. That’s the day that Carter and I divide our forces and go out to collect all the food waste buckets local individuals and restaurants have filled so that we can recycle that material for them. Last Monday things seemed different; the van moved slower and the rear end appeared to sit a little lower. I had the sense something had changed and it was time to crunch the numbers. At the shop, Carter and I compared notes and realized that we had just collected a ton of food waste.
That’s 2,000 pounds of egg shells, banana peels, coffee grounds and all manner of kitchen organics in our buckets, ready to go to the compost pile and not a landfill. We ran more numbers, looked at the notes from previous weeks, and realized that it wasn’t uncommon on recent runs to collect that amount. It was a clear and hopeful sign that we are onto something.
For some, composting food waste is still a new concept and it might be hard to wrap your head around why we do this. I’m sure you can picture some of the reactions I get, as I go door to door, trying to get people excited about handing over what they may consider to be trash. Some simply haven’t thought much about what happens to this material once the garbage truck hauls it away. For others, it may be that there just hasn’t been an easy alternative to throwing their food waste in the garbage. We’re looking to change that. Food waste is a major portion of what ends up in landfills, which is not good for the environment. Blue Line Compost can do something with that food waste so you don’t have to throw it away or compost on your own. We all receive the benefit of having this work done.
We have many different options for people who are interested in composting food waste in their home or business. Our goal at Blue Line Compost is to make things as easy as possible for people to get into what we’re doing. If you fill a bucket, we’ll pick it up and take care of all the dirty work. Or you can drop off a full bucket at one of our Swap Locations. If you live anywhere near the High Peaks or Tri-Lakes, then we have an option for you.
Once the food scraps arrive at our facility, we pile it up, mix in ingredients, like wood chips, and let the magic happen. It’s kind of like that leaf pile you might have in your backyard which will decompose if you leave it long enough. We just studied the science and found the right things to mix with food waste to make decomposition happen quickly and effectively. The end result is a high quality finished compost that is necessary in order to improve the health of our soils, our environment, and our community.
Check out the fun little video of me and my business partner, Carter Rowley (AKA the Compost Guru), picking up food waste from one of our customers, Origin Coffee in Saranac Lake. You’ll see the process as we combine their food waste with the rest from our rounds and add it to our compost piles.
If you’d like to find out more about what we do, or how you can start composting at your home or business, check out our website at: bluelinecompost.com. Or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blue Line Compost LLC
Composting within the Blue Line
Learn more about composting in the Adirondacks on our Compost for Good project page.