New! Community Composting Pods

Neighborhood food scrap collection sites that can support up to 20 households per week throughout Hardwick, VT and the surrounding area.

How it works

Neighborhood Sign-Ups

As a member of a POD, you’ll work with your neighbors to concentrate food scraps in a 48 gallon tote that BDF will pick up weekly. One household signs up to host the food scrap tote. Neighbors and friends sign up to drop off their home food scraps in that tote for a small fee ($2/week). 

Neighborhood Composting Pods will not only provide increased accessibility for neighbors to compost their food scraps, but will also be a lovely opportunity for neighbors to increase their contact and collaboration with one another. 

Save money, fuel, and time and make composting a community effort! Steward our local resources by keeping nutrients local. Reduce greenhouse gasses by keeping food scraps out of the landfill and protect our soil from plastics and other pollutants by keeping waste out of the food scrap tote.

Separate Food Scraps at Home

As a POD member, you’ll  receive a home composting kit that contains a 5 gallon bucket, a fridge magnet that lists acceptable items for composting, and a PLU (fruit sticker) collection poster. 

Your job is simple, but very important: source separation. Your job is to separate food scraps from other waste like plastics, metals, and glass. This means removing the PLU stickers (fruit stickers) from your lemons, avocados, and bananas, removing the rubber bands from your herbs and the twist ties from your celery, and making sure plastic films don’t end up in your compost  bucket. 

We have some tips and FAQs here that make source separation convenient and easy!

Use your neighborhood POD tote

You can empty your home food scrap bucket into your neighborhood POD tote at your convenience. Maybe it’s on your way to work, or to the grocery story. Maybe it’s a fun evening activity with your kids. It’s totally up to you. Depositing your food scraps is simple:

  1. Empty your scraps into your neighborhood tote.

  2. Add a scoop of sawdust over your scraps. This covers the fresh scraps and cuts down on odors.

  3. Make sure the tote lid is closed.

That’s it! BDF will empty the neighborhood tote and powerwash it to keep it clean each week.

Interested? Join today!

Select the location of your choice below. Specific details will be provided after you subscribe to the POD.

The Creamery Rd. Pod is now full. Please choose a different Pod!

Composting is easy! At Black Dirt Farm, we practice Source Separation which means we separate food scraps from other waste streams like trash and recycling. With minimal effort you can incorporate food scrap separation into your daily routine. Here are a FAQs and few tips and tricks to get you started:

  • Only food and food derived waste can we composted with black dirt farm. Think of it this way, anything you would eat or anything that was part of something you would eat. Fruit and veggie scraps, meat scraps and bones, dairy products, leftovers that have gone bad, nut shells, coffee grounds, old salad dressings, egg shells, etc.

    Things like rubber bands, PLU stickers (fruit stickers), twist ties, etc. must be removed from food scraps. We not accept plastics, metals, paper products lined with plastic, sugar packets, tea envelopes, or food contaminated with cleaning agents.

    We do not accept compostable bags, utensils, cups, k-cups, etc.

    Check out the poster to the right for a full list.

  • It shouldn’t. In general, a clean food scrap bucket with a lid that’s emptied weekly shouldn’t smell bad.

    Things like shell fish or an excess of cooked foods, or a lot of liquid will lead to a more odorous vessel.

    Brown paper bags or regular newspaper can be used to absorb liquid and “cap” a bin.

    We suggest that you always clean and dry your bin after emptying it. A little baking soda scrub can do wonders!

  • YES! If your neighborhood doesn’t have a POD yet, you can start one! You can sign up to be the food scrap tote ‘host’ in your neighborhood. 

    Hosts must have a roughly 6'x4' space that can house one food scrap tote and one sawdust tote (think 48-gallon curbside trash container). Our truck must also be able to access the totes.

    The host receives free service and some other fun benefits for their willingness to host the containers.

    Give us a call at 802-533-7033 and we can see if your household might be a good fit.

  • The food scraps that get deposited into the compost totes are emptied into our collection truck and brought back to the farm where they are blended into a compost mix which provides forage for our flock of 1200 laying hens.

    We then make compost and worm castings with the excess food and manure. Finally, we use the resulting products to nourish our soils and crops. Crops include hay, salad greens and other loose leaf greens, tomatoes, and a small number of row crops.

    Our farm is firmly based in regenerative agricultural practices and the creation of sustainable food systems.

    Since 2014, we’ve diverted over 15 million pounds of food scraps from the landfill, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of not burning 603,598 gallons of gasoline and capturing enough nitrogen to fertilize over 1,000 acres of mixed vegetable crops.

How do we keep bears out of the totes? Ratchet straps and reusable zip-ties!