By: Sara Mack, Marketing Manager
As we approach the solstice, our team at Compost Crew is so excited for summer to officially begin. This being said, composting in the warmer months can be associated with some unique challenges. Even though composting doesn’t lead to more pests or smells than “traditional” waste management strategies, it’s not necessarily butterflies and rainbows all of the time. Luckily, we’re here to help! Hot weather doesn’t have to mean stinky food scraps, and in this blog post we’ll share our top tips for streamlining the composting process straight from our experts.
1. Keep it cool
When temperatures heat up, organic scraps break down faster. Without the appropriate proportions of carbon-rich “browns” like leaves, this means your bin has a bigger chance of getting stinky — especially if you store it outside in the sun. In order to keep your scraps from decomposing too much before they reach our facilities, we recommend that you keep your compost bin in a shady, cool place like a garage or basement until pick-up day.
2. Freeze your scraps
To make it even easier to keep the contents of your bin cool and slow decomposition even further, try freezing your food scraps. Even if your freezer is packed with popsicles and doesn’t have the capacity to store five gallons of food scraps, no problem! Putting any amount of the wetter scraps in a bag or tupperware container in the freezer until pick up day will make the process much less smelly.
3. Layers, layers, layers
Anything you can do to keep the contents of your bin dry is a win when it comes to reducing odor. Adding a layer of greasy cardboard or dry corn husks between particularly wet items in your bin is a great way to do this.
4. Dealing with pests
Just like in normal trash pickup, bugs can be attracted to organic materials as they break down. Luckily, if you’re dealing with bugs such as maggots this summer, the solution may be slightly contradictory to some of the suggestions we have offered thus far. Maggots cannot survive in extreme cold or extreme heat. Because of this, we recommend leaving your bin in the direct sun (ideally empty — keep those scraps in the freezer if you can!) for a short amount of time for a few days leading up to pickup. For more information about dealing with pests, check out our earlier blog post about this!
If you’re new to composting, or even if you’re a seasoned veteran, we want the composting experience to be as seamless as possible. We love these summer tips that have been tested by our compost experts, and we’re thrilled to be able to keep food waste out of local landfills all year round by making the process as easy as possible. If you have any suggestions or questions related to making composting even easier in summer months, feel free to leave a comment below!