What is Composting?

Composting is a natural process through which organic material is converted into a soil-like product called compost or humus (pronounced "hue-mous"). The process works with the help of microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi combined with air and moisture.

Composting is an important way to recycle and it is an easy way to reduce the amount of household garbage. As well, it's a great way to improve the health and beauty of your garden or lawn.

Composting is second nature to many Nova Scotians. Residents have been diverting food and yard waste from landfills since 1998 - the year compostable materials were banned from disposal. Each year, more than 100,000 tonnes of organics are collected through residential, commercial and industrial composting programs. Businesses in Nova Scotia are also required to divert organics by offering customers and staff comprehensive sorting programs.

To reduce our waste, we need everyone to compost - at home, at work and at play! Make the most of your green cart and know your region's compost guidelines. Go one step further by composting right in your backyard.

To learn more about what's accepted in the organics program in your region of the province, please visit the Sorting Guide.

Did you know Nova Scotians Waste 1/3 of the Food They Buy?

Food rots. That's a fact of life. But did you know Nova Scotians waste 1/3 of the food they buy? Before we compost, we need to first reduce the amount of food waste in our lives.

Tips on cutting food waste

  • Plan your meals. Knowing the menu for the week in advance will allow you to shop only for what you need.
  • Stick to a shopping list. This will help you avoid impulse buys or purchasing items you may not be able to finish before they expire.
  • Use your leftovers. Supper leftovers can make a great lunch the next day saving you time and money.
  • What foods are rotting in your fridge? Think about the foods that seem to spoil more than others and then consider smaller portions, new recipes, or purchasing those foods less often.
  • Control your portions. Make sure your eyes aren't bigger than your stomach and avoid leaving food waste on your plate.
  • And when all else fails...  Compost!

300 kg

To reach our goal of 300 kg, we all need to reduce our waste by one quarter.