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Environmental Initiatives


New York City (NYC)


Food accounts for almost 17 percent of NYC’s waste. When this material is sent to a landfill, it contributes to NYC’s disposal costs and creates powerful greenhouse gas emissions. When composted, food scraps and other organic waste become a useful product that adds nutrients and improves the quality of soil for street trees, gardens and more.

NYC residents can bring kitchen scraps to Greenmarket compost drop-off sites. For NYC businesses there are special haulers who have capacity to handle commercially-generated organic waste. Once people drop off their fruit and vegetable scraps at a Greenmarket, the scraps will be transported to a compost facility and transformed into a fertile soil amendment for local farming projects and other uses.

Accepted materials include fruit and vegetable scraps, non-greasy food scraps (rice, pasta, bread, cereal etc.), coffee grounds & filters, tea bags, hair and nails (animal or human), egg and nut shells, pits, cut or dried flowers, houseplants and potting soil. Products like meat, chicken, fish, greasy food scraps, fat, oil, dairy, dog or cat feces, kitty litter, coal or charcoal, coconuts, diseased and/or insect-infested houseplants/soil or biodegradable/compostable plastics are not accepted.

Food scraps can be collected in large covered plastic containers, plastic bags, milk cartons or in commercially-available compost pails. To reduce odors at home and at the Greenmarket, it is suggested that the food scraps are stored in the freezer or refrigerator prior to delivering them to the collection site. A layer of shredded newspaper at the bottom of the storage container also helps.

It is also possible to do composting at home in NYC. For more information, visit:

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Grow NYC - Compost
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