Now is the time for all apartments, condominiums, townhouses, and strata complexes not currently collecting food waste to get started
* * * * *
With the price of groceries these days, many of us are looking for ways to use every crumb and reduce food waste. But after you’ve eaten the leftovers, boiled vegetable scraps into broth and filled the freezer, even the most economical household will have some coffee grounds, chicken bones and other food waste to dispose of.
Food waste that finds its way to landfills does not decompose easily, and if we divert it to the proper facility we can turn those scraps into healthy soil. That’s why the Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD) passed Bylaw 1495, which requires that all recyclable materials and food waste be sorted out of garbage and delivered to appropriate waste processing or disposal facilities.
The bylaw applies to all residential and commercial properties in Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Harrison Hot Springs, Hope, Kent, Mission, and all FVRD electoral areas, and includes all single-family homes, apartments, condominiums, townhouses, and other strata complexes.
“While many building complexes have already started sorting compost, this is not the case for everyone. For those that haven’t, now is the time to start!” says Carolynn Lane, Environmental Services Coordinator for the FVRD. “You’ll be amazed at how little waste is left after composting and recycling.”
Talk to your property manager about collecting food waste
For residents in a condo, apartment, or townhouse, does your building have a compost bin? If it doesn’t, talk to your building manager or strata about it. They can work with waste haulers to get started, or find more information at bewastewise.com. Most building complexes are not included in their city’s curbside collection program, so it is often up to the building manager to arrange for waste collection services.
“To comply with the bylaw, buildings need to provide at least three separate bins for the sorting of recycling, compost, and garbage, and arrange for these sorted materials to be delivered to authorized facilities for processing or disposal,” Lane says.
Sort it out! How to compost in the Fraser Valley
- Compost includes food products (baked goods, fruit & vegetable scraps, meat & bones), food-soiled paper & wooden utensils, and plant waste. It does not include pet waste, plastic packaging or diapers.
- Grab a kitchen catcher, ice cream pail or coffee can and line it with newspaper or a paper bag. When it’s full, or if you’re dropping off other garbage in the collection area, bring your kitchen catcher at the same time!
- TIP: If your scraps are starting to smell, you can wrap them in newspaper or paper towel and put them in a bag in your freezer until collection day. Then, dump out the bag into the collection bin and voila! No stink!
The FVRD has posted an online survey and they want to hear from people living in an apartment, condo, or townhouse complex about food waste collection services offered in their building. For those already collecting all three waste streams, they would like to hear how it is going so far. If your building isn’t yet collecting food waste, let them know so they can help get a system started up. The survey takes only five minutes to complete. Complete the survey at haveyoursay.fvrd.ca/foodwaste.
All Fraser Valley residents have the opportunity to do the right thing and keep food waste out of the landfill. Learn more at bewastewise.com.