Report Card: Minneapolis organics recycling first year

The city of Minneapolis has released its first full year of organics recycling data, with more than 45,000 households composting an average of 175 pounds of organics each.

In the first full year of organics recycling in Minneapolis, almost 43 percent of solid waste and recycling customers added a green organics cart, which diverted almost 4,000 tons of organics from the trash.

Less than one percent of organics waste collected by the city in the first year was not acceptable material – mostly plastic-lined paper products like decorative paper plates, ice cream tubs, milk cartons, Chinese food containers and coffee cups.

Organics recycling includes:

All food scraps including fruits, vegetables, bones, meat, breads, pasta, nut shells, eggshells and dairy products.

Non-recyclable and food-soiled paper products including paper towels, napkins, facial tissues, egg cartons and pizza boxes.

Certified compostable paper cups, plates, bowls, utensils, bags and takeout containers.

Other compostable items including coffee grounds, tea bags, wood chopsticks, Popsicle sticks and toothpicks, hair, and houseplant trimmings.

Organics recycling does not include:

Yard waste; et waste, litter or bedding; milk cartons; ice cream tubs; Chinese food containers; dryer lint; dryer sheets; diapers; sanitary products; cleaning or baby wipes; grease; oil; Styrofoam; foil-lined products; non-certified compostable bags and food service items; or products labeled “biodegradable.”