Dubuque Expands Food Scrap Collection Program

by Katie Wiedemann, Reporter


By Katie Wiedemann

DUBUQUE, Iowa - For the past seven years the city of Dubuque has had a curbside food scrap composting program. But the city only allowed about 200 people to participate. Now Dubuque is working with a new company, Midwest Organic Solutions in Farley. That means everyone who lives in Dubuque can compost their food scraps.

Scraping your leftovers into a container, then dumping that container into a compost bin may seem like a daunting task. But Dubuque's food scrap recycling program has been pretty popular.

Dubuque's Resource Management Director Paul Schultz said, "I think there's about 40 people on the waiting list. "

The city recently hired Midwest Organic Solutions to take over the composting program. The company blends the food and yard waste together, then stores the material as it turns into compost.

Owner Dave Hermsen said, "we're taking something that use to go to the landfill, which realistically should go back into the soils. "

Farmers, gardeners and landscapers then buy that material and put it back in the ground to help things grow.

Schultz said, "We need to get this job done. These material need to be managed more responsibly for beneficial use. "

You can also put compostable paper products in the bin or bag too. That includes things like paper cups,plates and napkins.

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