Compost Communicator
From the Top of the Pile

By Linda Norris-Waldt, Deputy Director & Director, Advocacy, Corporate & Chapter Relations
The USCC has launched a new web page with our position on food dehydrators, commonly called "kitchen composters," on e-commerce sites.
Members join the US Composting Council because one of our key purposes is to make sure our industry is successful, and sometimes that requires taking a stand on things that impact that success.
The newly launched Food Dehydrators page contains our position on these units, developed through the research of a subcommittee of the Legislation and Environmental Affairs Committee (LEAC), recommended by LEAC and approved by the USCC Board of Directors.
As the page summarizes, "Those technologies whose output is accurately defined as dehydrated or pretreated materials, (which can be useful feedstock for the composting process or other applications), should not have 'compost' in their product name and marketing materials or imply in their product descriptions that they produce compost."

As the composting industry grows, we must adapt to its needs. As the voice of the compost industry, we need to know what is needed by you, our members. Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey. If you complete the survey by Jan. 23, you will be entered in a drawing to potentially win the following prizes:
  • One year membership (Bronze Level, a $475.00 value)
  • An iPad
  • Three people will win full conference passes to COMPOST2025 in Phoenix Arizona.
These prizes are a thank-you from the USCC’s membership committee.
The USCC annual Equipment Demonstration Day, “Demo Day,” will be held on Feb. 9 at Tomoka Landfill as part of our annual conference.  There will be breakfast, lunch, and a morning full of equipment demonstrations from USCC members and equipment vendors.  Please visit our newly updated Featured Equipment page to learn more about what you’ll experience at our annual show!
All of our CCLC members renewed their support of the compost industry through the USCC in the current membership year. Their support has enabled us to do our Model Zoning template, Model Rules, Compostable Labeling Principles/Legislative template, Target Organics Hub website, and Industry Economic Study. And that is not to mention the feedback they provide us as generators, brands, and packaging companies.
Take a peek at the quarterly newsletter we put out each month, which includes updates on USCC projects funded by CCLC as well as news about these great companies!  
Thank you to Chick-fil-A; Clif Bar & Company; Club Coffee; Dart; Eco-Products; Georgia-Pacific; Mars, Inc.; NatureWorks, Printpack, Inc.; Rubicon Global; Sabert, adviser Delaware North; supporter The Compost Consortium of Closed Loop Partners. 
Novolex Heritage Bag, LLC
Rotochopper, Inc.
Edge Innovate (NI) Ltd.®
The VS420 twin shaft design coupled with fuel efficiency and intelligent tramp metal detection ensures that the EDGE VS420  is easy to maintain, provides maximum uptime and provides a quick return on investment. At the heart of the EDGE VS420 are twin, high torque shredder shafts that can be customised to suit a customer's exact application requirements. EDGE's next generation shredder offers high capacity shredding, reliability and low operational costs.
As 2024 begins, let’s welcome an opportunity for continuous self-learning and growth through programs offered by the US Composting Council!
USCC Career Center can help companies and composting professionals navigate the composting job market. Offering a suite of essential career resources to help both employers and jobseekers, users can research our industry, get networking tips, and brush up on interview skills. Set up Job Alerts to be the first to know when a job matching specific criteria is posted. Not sure where to start? We can help.
USCC Certification as a Certified Compost Operations Manager™ or Certified Composting Professional™ gives you recognition for your achievement, advances your career, demonstrates your knowledge, and increases professionalism in the industry. Consider taking the next step this year, a CCOM™ or CCP™ may be the investment in yourself you’ve been looking for.
Compost University brings the classroom to you all year long. Learn at your own pace, choosing courses from beginner to advanced, on topics from Foundations of Composting to Facility and Site Management and Composting Science. When we say “Learn Here. Grow Here. THRIVE Here.™” you’ll do just that with CompostU™.
Start the year thinking about your Professional Development path. Here’s to 2024 being a year filled with an abundance of opportunities for both personal and professional development!

There are 32 days left before the world’s largest composting event: COMPOST2024. Members of the USCC's Market Development Committee are gearing up to meet you, and they have an exciting announcement scheduled at the Compost Use track on Wednesday, Feb. 7. The topic is STA Certified™ Compost 2.0! Check out the upcoming new look of the Seal of Testing Assurance Program! Don’t miss your chance to be the first to see the program’s new look.
See featured speakers Allison Forstmann, ReCultivateNY, Inc. (pictured above, left) and Suzanne Longacre, Laurel Valley Soils (pictured above, right), who will be unveiling this exciting new chapter in the STA program’s history.

The US Composting Council (USCC) is pleased to announce the recent formation of the Georgia Composting Council (GACC). The chapter’s role is to promote the composting industry and the reduction, reuse, and recycling of organic material through the support of infrastructure development, quality control, training, legislative and regulatory advocacy, and public education throughout the state of Georgia.
Composting plays an increasingly vital role in the circular economy of Georgia by diverting organic matter from residential, agricultural, commercial, institutional, and industrial sectors into a beneficial end use product that improves soil health. Food residuals makes up 12% (more than 800,000 tons) of the waste sent to Georgia landfills each year, with approximately 48% coming from the greater Atlanta area. Additionally, 65% of organic residuals from water and wastewater utilities are sent to landfills. Composting food residuals and other organic matter keeps these materials out of landfills and reduces methane emissions. Compost added to soil improves water infiltration and retention, reduces erosion, sequesters carbon, and contributes to plant health.
REOTEMP Instruments

The USCC has announced its 2024 schedule for the Compost Monthly Flash Communicator. We are thrilled to continue to bring you the latest news and updates across the compost industry. The Compost Communicator includes the member news section, in which we love to share stories about our fantastic members. Member News is an opportunity to share major news and updates regarding your organization. Please consider sharing content in the Compost Communicator a week before its publication. See the full schedule below. 

The Communicator will also be changing its point of contact. Daniel Ibarra, Marketing Coordinator, will be the main point of contact starting with February’s edition. Please send future newsletter content to Daniel at


Source: Recycling Product News

The Compost Council of Canada (CCC) and Compost Manufacturing Alliance (CMA) have come together to develop and implement an in-field disintegration testing and certification program for compostable products in Canada.
Gary Vermeer, the founder of Vermeer Corporation, has been inducted into the inaugural Farm Equipment's Shortline Legends Hall of Fame.

This prestigious honor recognizes individuals whose innovations have had a lasting impact on North America's machinery and dealer distribution industry over the past 55 years.
Using his farming background and innovative mindset, Gary developed solutions that directly addressed the real challenges farmers face. Gary’s groundbreaking inventions have had a significant impact on the agricultural industry. One of his notable inventions was a mechanical wagon hoist, which simplified the transportation and unloading of corn between farms. However, his most well-known invention was the revolutionary large round baler, which helped transform labor-intensive processes and paved the way for increased productivity for farmers.
Department of Sanitation New York (DSNY), in collaboration with Sustainable Generation and DENALI Water Solutions LLC, is proud to announce the launch of the most advanced composting facility in the Northeast at the Staten Island Compost Facility. This innovative initiative will transform the facility from an open windrow turning operation to a state-of-the-art SG BUNKER® System with GORE® Covers, setting new standards in environmentally responsible food waste processing.
The decision to upgrade the Staten Island Compost Facility was not taken lightly. DSNY and its consultant conducted an exhaustive composting technology evaluation to identify the best solution for this facility. Of paramount importance was the ability to meet stringent state and local regulatory requirements, including:

  • Meeting strict air quality standards for odors and VOC emission reduction,
  • Complete separation of process water (leachate) from stormwater, and
  • Production of high-quality finished compost.
Source: SMSC Organics Recycling Facility, The Dirt

After nearly 11 years of dedicated service, Al Friedges, the Biomass Processing Manager and the driving force behind the success of the SMSC Organics Recycling Facility (ORF), is bidding farewell to his celebrated career. Friedges’ last day, Jan. 5, 2024, marks the end of an era filled with accomplishments, laughter, and a positive impact on the workplace culture.
Friedges’ retirement is bittersweet for all of us at SMSC. As we bid him adieu, we reflect on the legacy he leaves behind—a thriving ORF business and the upcoming Dakota Prairie Composting facility. Friedges’ decision to retire wasn’t an easy one, but with the support of his wife Patty and his large family, he looks forward to spending more time with those he holds dear on his farm and at his cabin.
The site manager is responsible for implementing and directing the day-to-day process control and operational activities, plans, and programs to ensure efficient operation and 100% environmental compliance. This includes the direction and management of area customers, expenses, staffing (internal & external), revenues, equipment resources and participation in the sales processes of the area.
CREF is gearing up for their 2024 lineup of Compost Operations Training Courses (COTCs), with two scheduled for spring.  Both are currently open for registration. The first will be held March 18-22 in Sonoma County, CA.  The next one is scheduled for May 13-17 in Grand Junction, CO. These trainings are great for anyone already employed at a facility and looking to bolster their understanding on compost facility operations, or for someone planning to start their own operation but unsure where to begin. The COTC is designed for anyone interested in obtaining comprehensive knowledge on how to run a successful compost facility.
The Cary Oshins Training Scholarship is also available and accepting applications.  This scholarship is designed to increase access to this program by covering part of the registration costs. Keep an eye out for summer and fall COTCs being announced in the coming months.

As many in the industry know, testing compostable products can be a challenge. The Compost Research & Education Foundation and BSIbio Packaging have been working together to support composters across North America through the Compostables Field Testing Program (CFTP). The goal of the CFTP is to help composters identify which compostable product types break down most efficiently under the real-world conditions at real facilities. After years of testing at many different facility types and sizes, the CFTP now has enough data to present findings at the Compost2024 Conference in Daytona Beach, FL. Alongside other compostable field testers, the CFTP will present findings, lessons learned, and how to take this testing into the future. The CFTP will have a booth at the conference and is looking forward to discussing compostables and field testing with other industry professionals!

Source: Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County
In October 2023, mayor Freddie O’Connell of Nashville joined Metro Waste Services staff in launching a curbside Food Scraps Pickup program to work with Metro residents in limiting the amount of food waste that ends up in landfills. By the end of November, the one-year pilot program collected over 12 tons of food scraps and other compostable material. 
Source: Yvette Cabrera, Madeline Keating, Darby Hoover, Nina Sevilla, Andrea Collins, Anya Obrez | NRDC
The Natural Resource Defense Council's (NRDC) food waste team reflected on all they have accomplished this year and what they're most excited for in 2024. With every year that passes, food waste draws increasing attention, investment, and commitment. This blog recaps some of the highlights of the year’s work, along with other key developments in food waste reduction. 
Source: John Senn, EPA Press
On Dec. 27, 2023, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a the award of $3,571,064 in grant funding to the City of Ontario, CA to help the city upgrade its recycling collection infrastructure and reduce food waste through a new digital donation tool.
“This grant empowers the City of Ontario to pursue ambitious food waste reduction efforts, which are critical to keeping material out of landfills that can be donated, composted, or recycled,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Deputy Regional Administrator Cheree Peterson. “The projects this grant will fund are emblematic of the great work happening across California to recover edible food and increase composting and recycling, creating significant benefits for local communities and the environment.”
Source: Tess Kazdin, Waste Today Magazine
The New York Department of Sanitation (DSNY) Staten Island Compost Facility has undergone an expansion ahead of New York’s curbside composting program rollout, DSNY says the expasion will increase the facility’s capacity by nearly 2,000 percent. 
Upcoming Events
Jan 2024
Join the Compost Research & Education Foundation as we explore the growing movement for more sustainable funerary practices through composting of human remains. In this first session of our 2-part webinar series, we'll provide an overview of this unique way of composting, from process considerations to compassionate handling of the deceased.
Jan 2024
The EPA recently released two new reports quantifying methane emissions from landfilled food waste and updating recommendations for managing wasted food. This webinar will provide an overview of the findings of the two reports.
Feb 2024
Online exhibitor registration opened on April 3. Contact Green Fern Events at For sponsor interest, contact Standard Registration ends on Feb. 5.
Feb 2024
The Annual Membership Meeting will take place on the first day of COMPOST2024 from 5:00pm - 6:00pm in the Ocean Center Exhibit Hall.
Feb 2024
The plenary will include the opening keynote from Didi Pershouse titled "How the Structural and Functional Integrity of Healthy Soil Can Aid in Climate Resiliency." Sponsored by Ecoverse.
Feb 2024
The plenary will include the closing keynote from Massimo Centemero and Marco Ricci of the Italian Composting and Biogas Association titled "A Discussion on Thirty Years of Capturing Organics in Italy."
Feb 2024
See the latest equipment from top manufacturers operating side-by-side while meeting the vendors and providing contacts for follow-up conversations.
Apr 2024
The 10th Annual New York State Organics Summit will take place April 16-18, 2024 in Buffalo, NY at the Hyatt Regency Buffalo. Registration will open Wednesday, January 17, 2024!