Need a home for your banana peels, rotten eggs and plant clippings?
Friendly Composting, a Kamloops-based organic waste collection service, is expanding to surrounding communities and will be rolling out a Sun Peaks program this spring.
Currently, Kamloops residents can sign up for a $35 monthly subscription with the company, which includes a clean composting bin staff swap out weekly at your home, according to co-founder Katie Forsyth.
Friendly Composting also partners with nearly 25 farmers and food producers to deliver fresh and organic food to registered composters.
Forsyth said expanding to Sun Peaks is an important next step in the company’s plan, but staff are still figuring out program logistics.
“If it looks similar to the way we’re running our residential program right now with the door-to-door and food delivery, then that’s amazing,” Forsyth said. “But we ultimately want to see it roll out to as many residents as we can.”
“If it works better to run a central waste station, and residents are required to come bring their bins there to exchange or to dump, then that’s likely how we’ll run it.”
In addition to the residential program, Friendly Composting also plans to focus on commercial waste in Sun Peaks, helping restaurants, cafes and markets properly dispose of their waste.
Forsyth founded Friendly Composting in March 2020 with her roommate, Claire McLoughlin. She said the pair was tired of throwing all their waste in the garbage and decided to look for a local solution.
“It turned out there actually wasn’t a place you could take your food waste, even if you were motivated to start composting,” Forsyth said. “Friendly Composting began out of that idea — that likely there were more people in our community that felt the same way and were lacking a solution.”
Forsyth and McLoughlin found land to compost on, bought restored buckets and slowly grew their business through word of mouth and online groups. Now they have pickup locations all around Kamloops, collecting a total of about 175,000 pounds of compost in 2021.
With a strong base in Kamloops, Friendly Composting hopes to run its Sun Peaks program community-wide right away to divert even more food waste from the landfill.
“Food that is sent to the landfill, put in a garbage bag and trapped without air releases a gas called methane,” Forsyth said. “It’s an extremely harmful gas that emits into the air and it seeps into groundwater. It’s a huge contributor to global warming.”
When food waste is composted instead of trashed, it breaks down into nutrient-rich soil and can be given back to local farmers to further stimulate the economy.
Forsyth said she is happy to connect with any Sun Peaks community members who have ideas or would like to be involved with the rollout of the new program. Anyone interested can reach out to [email protected]