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The City of Edina strives to be a leader among municipalities in sustainability.
In response to the State of Minnesota directing the counties in Minnesota to reduce the amount of waste that goes to a landfill, Hennepin County revised an ordinance to require the cities in the county make organic collection available to the residents by Jan. 1, 2022 in cities with a population greater than 10,000.
Edina’s Energy & Environment Commission received information regarding collection options and recommended a the city-wide residential curbside collection program to the Edina City Council. The Edina City Council approved a curbside residential collection program in March 2019, which went into effect in summer 2020.
The organics program was built using the same model as the existing recycling program, where every single-family, double- and multi-unit properties up to eight will receive a cart in order to increase participation in the program.
Once you have received an organics collection cart at your home, you can begin.
Collect organics in a BPI-certified compostable bag. These bags can be purchased at retail locations such as Jerry’s Do It Best Hardware and Linden Hills Co-op. Remember, only bags labeled "BPI Certified Compostable” that meet ASTM D6400 standards may be used.
People typically line an old ice cream pail or small trash can with a compostable bag to collect food scraps. Once the bag is full, tie it up and place it in your organics cart. Organics carts are picked up weekly on your trash day.
It’s okay to feel overwhelmed by this, and this is new to a lot of people. Our recommendation is to begin in the kitchen with your basic food scraps. Make small changes which are easy to turn into habits and worry about perfecting your system later. For example, maybe you are not ready to collect all your food waste just yet, but you could start by putting your coffee filter and grounds into a compostable bag every day.
If you are on the fence about this program, then we recommend giving it a try for a couple weeks just to see how it goes. You could end up surprising yourself with how much you can put in the new carts! You may always request the cart to be picked up later.
If you’re currently a Vierkant customer, you will not be charged twice. You will still get a new organics cart from Vierkant. Your current Vierkant organics cart will remain and become a yard-waste only cart.
Vierkant will no longer accept co-mingled organics and yard waste because the commercial composting facility the organics are taken to will not accept the materials together. If you have concerns or questions, please call Vierkant at 612-922-2505.
Yes, tea bags can go in there. A couple things to make sure of first though: 1) make sure it is the paper bag kind of tea bag, not the plastic netting ones. The plastic ones are usually triangular. If they are the plastic kind, you can open them up and put the leaves into your organics bin, but the plastic part must be disposed of in the garbage can. 2) If your tea bag has a small metal staple on the top, remove that beforehand putting it in the bin.
Even if you only have a banana peel and some coffee groundsto add into cart every week, that is still helpful and contributes to ourcity’s goals! Every little bit of material we divert from the landfill has apositive impact.
Yard waste is not allowed.
Currently the only size we have is the 35 gallon carts which have been delivered. However, we will possibly have a smaller size available in the future as an option. If/when those are available, then we will put out an information release for residents.
You can decline or return your cart by contacting the Organics Recycling Coordinator Twila Singh at 952-826-1657 or TSingh@EdinaMN.gov. Email is preferred so that the address is accurate. While you are not required to keep the cart, this is a new citywide utility in addition to our traditional recycling. The cost is $5.50/month which will appear on your quarterly utility statement. At this time, we do not have the option to remove the charge from your account. Just like traditional recycling, even if we choose not to recycle aluminum and cardboard, we are all paying into the organics program to encourage maximum participation.
The monthly price per household is $5.50.
The charge will appear on quarterly utility bills from the City of Edina, beginning in July 2020.
Vierkant Disposal will pick up organics recycling every week on your regular recycling day of the week.
If your organics cart collection is missed, call Vierkant at 612-922-2505.
In terms of organics recycling, compostable items are materials which will break down at the commercial composting facility. Biodegradable items may also be compostable, but some of these items take hundreds of years to break down and therefore we do not want them in the curbside organics carts. An example of this would be chewing gum.
Residents may request to change the size of their cart. After a review of the materials in the cart (no yard waste is allowed), Vierkant Disposal will change the size one time in a 12-month period. To make such a request, call Vierkant at 612-922-2505.
The standard size of the organics carts being delivered to homes is 35 gallons – the smallest available.
No. Plastic bags are not compostable and are a contaminant. You risk turning an entire load of compostable material into garbage if you use plastic bags. Use bags labeled “BPI-certified compostable.” These bags can be purchased at retail locations such as Jerry’s Do it Best Hardware, Cub and your local co-op.
Paper bags may be used as long as they are 100% compostable.
The City of Edina selected Vierkant Disposal for city-wide collection based on their low price and reputation as a trash hauler. They can be reached at 612-922-2505.
You can compost more materials with organics recycling than in your backyard compost bin. Large-scale commercial composting facilities maintain higher temperatures than backyard compost bins. These temperatures are needed to kill bacteria and break down items that cannot be composted in a backyard compost bin, including meat, bones, dairy products and compostable plastics. Backyard composting is still a great option for recycling fruit and vegetable scraps and yard waste into a soil amendment that you can use at home.
Organics won’t smell any more than your regular garbage smells. Remember that with organics recycling, you’re simply moving the organic materials from your garbage cart into your organics cart.
Help prevent odors by using a collection container, lined with a compostable bag, that has a vented lid or don’t use a lid. Food waste starts to decompose and creates odors more quickly when access to oxygen is cut off. You can purchase a pre-made kitchen pail with a vented lid, or you can make one using an ice cream pail or other container.
If you’re currently composting, please don’t stop. Backyard composting is higher on our waste reduction strategy than curbside organics recycling, and it’s a practice that should be celebrated.
Use your organics cart for the items that are harder or more difficult for backyard operations. These include pizza boxes, tissues, egg cartons and compostable utensils. These items often don’t break down as fast in backyard operations because they require higher temperatures and more time.
The organics collected curbside are taken to a commercial facility in Shakopee, Minnesota, and recycled into compost, a nutrient-rich material that is used in landscaping and road construction projects to improve our soil.
Hennepin County requires all cities in the county have an organics recycling program in place by Jan. 1, 2022. St. Louis Park and Minneapolis already have the program. Bloomington is planning to add organics recycling to its next collection contract.
No. You can use any small bucket, ice cream pail or crock for collecting organic material. Some residents use larger under-the-counter bins or stand-alone cans in their kitchens for collection. Look online or check with your favorite local store if you wish to purchase your own indoor collection bin.
Not this specific one, but several businesses in Edina do participate in organics recycling through their refuse hauler. All large businesses in Hennepin County are required to start doing this by January 1, 2022. Learn more about Hennepin County’s plans for organics recycling here. The City of Edina is working with Hennepin County to ensure that organics recycling is successful in our local businesses. There are even grants available to help businesses get started!
Apartments and multi-family homes are not currently part of the City program and will not be charged or receive a cart. Only single-family, double- and multi-unit properties up to eight will be charged for the program and receive a cart from the City of Edina.
The City hopes to work on an organics program for larger multi-unit complexes sometime in the future.
We encourage residents to use the hashtag #EdinaRecycles when posting about our programs on social media.
Although using a garbage disposal and flushing food scraps is better than landfilling it, composting uses less water and energy than water treatment systems do. Water treatment costs are rising as well. In order to protect our treatment facilities or our beautiful lakes, it’s preferred that food scraps go into the organics recycling cart.
Your housing association can work directly with your current waste hauler to see if they offer this service. If not, you can collectively find and bargain with a hauler to get this service started. Apartments, condos, and all high-density housing complexes can have a significant environmental impact. It’s important that organics recycling is offered to everyone.
There are a few solutions you could try: 1) Replace youryard waste cart with lawn and leaf bags. Most people do not use their yardwaste container 6 months out of year anyways. 2) Store your cans outside. 3)Share a cart with your neighbors who have bigger garages!
Yes, and so are lawn and leaf bags. These types of bags are good for drier items like fruit peels. Paper bags are not ideally suited for wet items like coffee grounds, and we highly recommend using the green compostable film bags for dairy and meat products to reduce pests.
Items which go in the organics recycling bin need to say "100% compostable" on them. If it has a number in a triangle on it, it does not belong in the organics cart.
Yes, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org and speak with them about purchasing more, or they are commonly sold online and in stores as "t-sacks" or "t-shirt" bags. Remember to ensure you purchase bags that are 100% compostable.
Remember that this is a temporary problem, unique to our beautiful Minnesota summers. One suggestion which has worked well thus far, has been to line the organics cart with a lawn and leaf bag. Then deposit the bagged organics into the lawn and leaf bag, and close that inside the cart. This works especially well if the green compostable bags are used in conjunction with the lawn and leaf bags. The idea is to create a physical barrier between the material and the flies.
From the City of Minneapolis website: “Maggots are a common, naturally occurring problem with many organics recycling programs. Even if you didn’t see them, maggots were commonly found in garbage carts before the City implemented the organics recycling program. Maggots are fly larvae and occur when flies lay eggs on organic materials. Maggots are more common in warmer temperatures. To prevent maggots inside your organics recycling cart, you have to prevent mature flies from laying eggs in on your food scraps by eliminating odors and reducing their access to organic materials. See our Outdoor Organics Collection Tips handout (PDF) for information about preventing maggots and other pests.”
Visitthe City of Minneapolis webpage for more helpful information.
Vierkant will be picking up and emptying carts until the evening hours on their daily routes. Please wait to bring your carts inside if they have not been emptied yet as they may still be working to get to your neighborhood. If your cart does get accidently missed for pick up, please call Vierkant as soon as possible to request it be emptied. Their main office number is 612-922-2505.
No. The bagging of organics is a guidance based on what has worked best previously. It is highly recommended for all dairy and meat items, as these tend to create smell. Larger and dry items can certainly be put directly into the cart without bagging.