Marion County Businesses Compost!
Compost at work in Salem and Keizer
The food scraps your business typically throws away can now be collected separately from garbage and turned into nutrient-rich compost. Nearly 20% of all the waste MarionCounty businesses and residents throw away is food scraps! And over 70% of the total waste from restaurants and grocery stores could be composted.
Look for the Marion County Compost window cling at your favorite local restaurant and help support Marion County business that care to compost.
Composting is easy. It only takes a few steps to get started.
Call your hauler to tell them you'd like to start composting.
Contact Marion County Environmental Services for free composting and recycling resources. We are here to answer questions and to assist you with your new program.
Set up the program and provide training to your employees.
Marion County offers materials and resources to assist your business with recycling and composting. Download this
list of free materials or call Marion County Environmental Services to request the materials you need.
Tips and ideas for training employees
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can participate?
Any businesses or organization in the Salem and Keizer area, including restaurants, grocery stores, school cafeterias, and other food-generating businesses.
What can I compost?
All food can be composted in this program, including fruit, vegetables, meat, bones, dairy, grains, baked goods, and prepared foods. Liquids (such as soups) are not accepted, but if it's possible to strain the liquid then any residual solids can be composted.
What happens to food scraps and food-soiled paper?
Food and food-soiled paper are collected curbside and brought to Pacific Region Compost (PRC) near Corvallis. Once delivered, the material is placed in rows on a concrete pad and covered with plastic. After going through a natural composting process, the finished product is sold locally at garden centers and to farmers.
Separating food scraps and food-soiled paper for composting conserves resources and benefits the agricultural community. Compost adds nutrients to soil, prevents erosion, and helps retain soil moisture.
I want my business to start composting food waste. What should I do?
Contact your waste hauler to learn about service options or call the Mid-Valley Garbage and Recycling Association at 503-390-4000. If you’d like resources to help set up the program and train your employees contact Marion County Environmental Services at 503-566-4159.
Is there a foul odor?
The same material is being thrown away as before, just in a separate bin. If you are having odor issues you could try cleaning your indoor containers more frequently. To avoid odors use biodegradable bags to contain all the material. You could also consider washing the bins more frequently.
If you would like more information about composting at work, please call Marion County Environmental Services at 503-566-4159.