Commercial Compost Collection for Food Scraps

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Skip Navigation LinksHome » Departments » Trash, Recycling & Compost » Commercial Compost Collection for Food Scraps

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​​​ First floor, 301 E. Huron Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Monday-Friday
7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

To report missed pickup or other problem, please use A2 Fix It.

734.994.7336
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​The city encourages all commercial properties that generate food scraps to sign up for compost collection services. The program offers customizable and flexible service options to fit your individual business needs. The cost of s​ervice will be determined by the number of carts and frequency of pickups chosen for your property. Please complete the form below to start, change or cancel commercial compost collection services.​

Picture1.png​ Start, change or cancel service​s​​​​​​​

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How much​​ will this cost?

What materials are accepted?

What materials are not accepted?

Tips for a successful program

Frequently asked questions


​​​How much will this cost?​

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​Monthly Rate​​
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​Every-other-week​​​
​Once/week
​Twice/week
​1 Compost cart
​​$37.83
​$75.66
​$151.32
​2 Compost carts
​$62.36
$124.70​​$249.40
​3 Compost carts
$86.87​$173.74​​$347.48
​4 Compost carts
$110.69​​
​​$221.38
​$442.76
​5 Compost carts
$133.81​​$267.61
​$535.23
​6 Compost carts
$156.93​​$313.85
​$627.70
​7 Compost carts
​$179.34
​$358.69
​$717.38
​8 Compost carts
​$201.76
​$403.52
​$807.05
​9 Compost carts
​$224.18
​$448.36
​$896.72
​10+ Compost carts
​$245.90
​$491.79
​$983.59

​​​​​Typical container is a 64-gallon curbside cart.​

​What materials are accepted?

Both pre-consumer (“kitchen-waste”) and post-consumer (“plate waste”) materials are accepted.​​

  • Plate scrapings
  • Spoiled or expired food
  • Fruits and vegetables (including pits & peels)
  • Cooked or raw meat, poultry, and seafood (including bones)
  • Coffee grounds and paper filters​​
  • Dairy products
  • Eggs and eggshells
  • Bread and grains
  • Cut flowers and house plants
  • Limited manufactured compostable products: CMA-W certified, fiber/paper only products*​
*A searchable list of accepted manufactured products can be found on our Compost Manufacturing Alliance - Windrow Change webpage. 

What materials are not accepted?

​When in doubt, leave it out! ​​​​

  • Yard waste*
  • Plastic of any kind (“compostable” plastics included)
  • Trash and recyclables
  • Bamboo and palm leaf products
  • Liquids (fats, oils, and grease included)
  • Glass
  • Styrofoam
  • Sawdust​
  • Wine corks
  • Diapers
  • Hazardous waste
  • Animal waste or cat litter​
  • Cigarette butts or ashes
*Yard waste is only accepted in residential compost carts.​

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​​​Tips for a Successful Program

​How can I prevent odors?

  • Sprinkle baking soda in compost cart and in your kitchen composter.
  • Store compost cart in the shade during warm weather.
  • Empty the contents of kitchen composter into your compost cart frequently.
  • Drain as much liquid as possible from food scraps before adding them to compost.
  • For extra-smelly food scraps, wrap in newspaper before placing in cart or put in the freezer until collection day.
  • Rinse out kitchen composter and compost cart before materials build up.
  • Spray inside of compost cart with a vinegar and water solution.

How can I prevent winter freezing?

  • Drain as much liquid as possible from food scraps.
  • Place an opened paper yard-waste bag inside the compost cart to hold the food scraps.
  • Put a couple pieces of flattened cardboard (1-2 large pizza boxes are perfect) at the bottom of the compost cart before adding food scraps. This buffer allows the material to slide out more easily.
  • Place materials into a small paper bag and then into your compost cart. It is advised that food scraps be double bagged during the winter.
  • Wrap drippy wet items (e.g., coffee grounds, melon rinds) in 1-2 sheets of compostable paper towels before putting into the compost cart.
  • Rinse out carts, if temperatures allow, with non-toxic soap and water and empty onto your grass or gravel, never down the storm drain.  

How can I prevent contamination?

  • Notify and educate staff before placing compost bins out for use.
  • Ensure indoor compost bins are clearly marked and easily distinguishable from other receptacles.
  • Place indoor trash, recycling, and compost bins directly next to one another.
  • Consider eliminating or cutting down on single-use items, such as condiment cups, straws, etc.
  • Replace single use items with reusable items, whenever possible. 
  • Ensure compostable and non-compostable products are easily distinguishable from one another.

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Frequently asked questions
Are “compostable” plastic liners accepted? 

No.

Is “compostable” plastic cutlery accepted? 
No.

How will I know if an item is accepted? 
The CMA-W certified products are not branded as such. If the item says that it is compostable and it is plastic, leave it out. If the item is paper or wood-based and says that it is compostable, then put it in.  

Are any biodegradable products institute (BPI) certified items acceptable? 
Yes, if they are paper/fiber items and on the list of allowed items. These are CMA-W certified items minus plastic, bamboo, and palm leaf products. Bioplastic, bamboo, and palm leaf products do not break down in our system in a timely manner. 

Are there some plastics that are accepted in the compost? 
No. They pose a real litter problem as they are light and blow around, especially when the plastic is shredded in the ​grinder. 

What can I use in place of biodegradable plastic bags? 
We strongly encourage liner-less kitchen composter use. If a liner is a must for a kitchen composter, an unlined paper one is recommended.​ For curbside carts, we recommend using ​a paper yard bag ​during the winter months​ to prevent materials from freezing to the cart.

What if there i​s a missed pickup?
You can report missed pickups and other issues through A2 Fix It

Is it true that commercial compost material is taken to a facility that still accepts “compostable” plastics? 
Yes, it is true that some material is hauled to a compost facility in Wixom, MI that accepts those materials. However, for any services provided in the City of Ann Arbor, they must utilize the same guidelines as the city’s compost facility. Residents frequenting local businesses may bring items home to put in the residential compost cart, and that material does go to the city’s compost facility, so it must be in compliance with the acceptance standards for that site.