What materials should not go into the compost?

Accepted materials in municipal composting programs vary. Basic programs include only yard and garden waste such as leaves, branches and grass clippings. More advanced programs accept all food scraps as well, including fruits and vegetables, coffee grounds, tea bags, egg shells, bones, meat, fish, dairy and baked goods. Contact the RCBC Recycling Hotline for more information on your local program.

Plastics and similar items including plastic bags, plastic wrap, elastics, twist ties and straws should NOT be placed in your curbside organics or composting bin. In most cases "biodegradable" and "compostable" plastics are also NOT included. Many composting facilities in B.C. are not currently equipped to handle biodegradable or compostable plastic bags. Read more on degradable plastics. Two exceptions which have specific requirements for approved compostable bags are the Capital Regional District and the Regional District of Nanaimo.

Other items that should not go into your curbside organics or green bin include:

  • Pet feces or kitty litter
  • Soiled diapers or baby wipes
  • Dental floss
  • Cigarettes or butts
  • Vacuum contents and bags
  • Dryer sheets and lint
  • Demolition/construction materials
  • Dirt, rocks or sod
  • Metal
  • Glass
  • Styrofoam materials such as cups, meat trays, plates or take-out containers
  • Compostable cutlery and cups
  • Tissues or napkins with any bodily substances including mucus, blood or feces

For more information on accepted material, contact the RCBC Recycling Hotline.

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