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Fayetteville Now Accepting Compostable Food Waste

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — The City of Fayetteville started a new program that is now accepting compostable food waste at two drop-off locations at no cost. Th...

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — The City of Fayetteville started a new program that is now accepting compostable food waste at two drop-off locations at no cost.

The City started accepting residential food waste Thursday (Jan. 2).

The City of Fayetteville says it is working hard to meet an important goal of diverting at least 40% of all waste sent to the landfill by 2027 and says, “composting is essential to this goal because food waste makes up 18% of the total waste going to the landfill.”

The food waste collected will be combined with the commercial food waste and processed into nutrient-rich compost available for purchase.

The commercial food waste compost program began as a pilot program in 2016 with only nine customers and now multiple grocery stores and restaurants throughout the city have added this service which is held three times a week. This was added in addition to recycling to reduce overall trash costs and materials sent to the landfill.

For residential collection, City staff recommends placing materials in a lidded container and dropping off once a week to reduce odors.

Below are the drop off locations and hours:

Marion Orton Recycling Center
735 W. North Street (between Gregg and Leverett Avenues)
  • Compostable food accepted Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (until 7 p.m. on Thursdays)
City Compost and Mulch Facility
1708 S. Armstrong Avenue
  • Compostable food (and yard waste) accepted:
  • Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • November – March: First Saturday of the month from 8 a.m. to noon
  • April – October: First and second Saturdays of the month from 8 a.m. to noon.

Acceptable food waste materials:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Coffee grounds and tea with filters
  • Consumable liquids
  • Dairy and non-dairy (nut) items such as milk, cheese, yogurt
  • Bread, dough, bakery items, pasta, grains
  • Eggs and egg shells
  • Food-soiled paper: paper bags, paper towels, paper napkins
  • Cooked meats and fish: shells, bones, wooden skewers, wooden cocktail sticks
  • Process Foods: pizza, cereal, chips, crackers, cooked meats, plate scraps
Please do not put the following materials in your compost, doing so will contaminate the mix. These items are not accepted:
  • Raw meats (fish, poultry, pork, seafood, beef)
  • Plastic bags, serve ware, utensils, twist-ties, rubber bands
  • Wood, metal, glass or other non-food items
  • Fats, oils, grease, non-consumable liquids, vegetable oil, lard

When organic materials like food and yard waste (grass clippings, leaves, brush, etc.) rot in landfills, they break down anaerobically (without oxygen) thus creating large amounts of methane. This flammable gas is the same as emitted through the production of coal, oil and natural gas. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), methane accounted for 10% of United States greenhouse gas emissions in 2017. Greenhouse gas (Ghg) traps heat within the Earth’s atmosphere and contributes to climate change.

The City of Fayetteville offers two types of high-quality compost for purchase. One is food waste compost for $35 per two cubic yard scoop and yard waste compost for $25 per two cubic yard scoop.

Mulch is available for free to Fayetteville residents and $10 per two-cubic-yard scoop. Compost and mulch are available to residents and non-residents.

Visit www.fayetteville-ar.gov/compost from more information about the City’s compost and mulch programs or contact Heather Ellzey, the City of Fayetteville’s Environmental Educator, to learn more via phone 479-718-7687 or email hellzey@fayetteville-ar.gov.