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Organics

Local jurisdictions have contracts with franchised garbage companies to provide service for collection of garbage, recycling and yard debris for residences and businesses.

Why recycle food scraps?
Organic material including food, leaves and prunings are the largest unrecycled portion of the residential waste stream. In fact, according to a recent Waste Characterization Study about 31% of residential garbage is organics, including 17.3% food waste — a resource that could be used instead of landfilled.

Accepted in the yard debris cart:
  • Fruit & peelings
  • Vegetables & peelings
  • Pasta, rice & bread
  • Meat, cheese, bones, fish
  • Eggshells
  • Tea bags, coffee grounds & filters
  • Wood ashes (cold)
  • Paper plates, bowls, and napkins (non-coated) used in food service from natural fibers including paper, palm, bagasse, and sugarcane
  • Landscape prunings
  • Grass clippings, leaves & weeds
  • Tree trunks & branches (maximum 4 inches in diameter by 2 feet long)
Not accepted in the yard debris cart:
  • Garbage
  • Plastic bags, including compostable plastics
  • Cooking oil & liquid waste
  • Dirt or rocks
  • Sod
  • Animal waste
  • BBQ ashes
  • Tree stumps
  • Cardboard

Compostable plastics are not a good choice.
Common examples are garbage bags, clear cups, utensils and compostable plastic garden pots. Problems with compostable plastics in the yard debris cart are:

  • They degrade too slowly for most municipal composting programs.
  • There is no easy differentiation from conventional plastics (e.g., no identifying color). Unless there is a clear identification system, compostable plastics look like conventional plastics and are sorted out as garbage.

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Mendocino Solid Waste Management Authority
3200 Taylor Drive, Ukiah, CA 95482