The use of chemical pesticides, herbicides and fungicides have denied microorganisms the opportunity to do work that comes naturally to them. Compost Crew simulates and supports Earth’s regenerative design through a simple practice, composting. We have now made the finished product available for purchase! Farm Feast, our very own brand of compost, can be used at home or for your business for the betterment of local soils.
Since 2011, Compost Crew has been collecting food scraps from residents and businesses in the greater Washington, D.C. area. Many have seen Compost Crew trucks come and empty the food scraps into our trucks, keeping tens of thousands of tons of organic materials out of local landfills…but what happens after that?
A portion of these food scraps are taken to a Compost Outpost, a smaller-scale composting site that shortens driving distances between where the food scraps are rescued and where they get recycled. Our Farm Feast compost is produced at these Outposts, actively supporting a circular economy by creating jobs within our community and utilizing locally-sourced food scraps to produce high-quality compost throughout the DMV!
“Units like this, with a small footprint, are very easy to control and very easy to put out good compost.” – Benny Erez, Composting Guru & Farmer
Composting at a smaller scale plays a major role in the creation of an excellent end product. While commercial facilities process a substantially larger volume, and create a finished product in a shorter time span, the process can affect the quality of the compost. At our Compost Outposts, we decontaminate these piles with a fine-tooth comb. Here, we support a Fellowship Program that teaches fellows the science behind composting while training the local community on the benefits of decentralized composting, farming and the use of high quality compost. Along with our trained sustainability professionals, they work to ensure the finished product meets compost’s full potential.
This nutrient-rich soil amendment is made through the process of recycling decaying organic matter through aerobic microbial decomposition. After sifting out contaminants by hand, the food scraps are mixed with leaves, hay and wood chips. This mixed pile is then moved into our repurposed shipping containers to sit for four weeks in an aerated static pile (ASP) system. Each container holds two tons of food scraps and six tons of carbon feedstock! ASP systems utilize blowers to pump oxygen into the pile, reducing labor and increasing the composting rate. After those four weeks, the pile is moved into an open-air windrow for two to three more months.
Farm Feast is classified as General Use Compost. Some farmers refer to compost as “black gold” given the wealth of benefits it provides for our soil. Here are just a few ways this compost is farmer-approved:
- Loosens soil, aiding in root development
- Retains moisture, reducing chances of drought
- Neutralizes soil pH, balancing acidic soils
- Attracts beneficial organisms, suppressing disease and providing resistance to harmful pests
- Supplies nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium
Overall, applying finished compost to local soils increases abundance and diversity in the soil’s biology, adds structure to the soil profile, and sequesters carbon from the atmosphere.
For years, our compost has been conveniently processed and used directly on-farm, aiding in plant growth, restoring nutrition and even enhancing the taste of our local food sources. That’s actually where we came up with “Farm Feast” but don’t let the name fool you! This nutrient-rich soil amendment can be used in a wide range of places including potted plants, landscaping projects and gardens of all sizes and soil types. Learn how and order yours, bagged or in bulk, by visiting Our Compost page.