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Acceptable Organics Materials

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Please place all food, food-soiled paper and other compostable household items in certified compostable bags. Tie the bag and place inside your organics cart. Organics should never be placed outside your cart.

Questions on what's accepted? View our detailed organics list or send an email to and staff will assist you.

Print or view the 2019 organics guide for a quick at home reminder of acceptable materials! 

Materials accepted for organics recycling

 All food scraps, cooked and uncooked (place in compostable bag)acceptable organics materials - apple core, egg shells, chicken

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Bread and cereal
  • Dairy products
  • Eggs and eggshells
  • Meat, fish, shellfish and bones
  • Nuts and shells

Food-soiled and compostable paper (place in compostable bag, except pizza delivery boxes and egg cartons)compostable paper items, napkin, plate, egg carton

  • Pizza delivery boxes (may be placed loose in cart; if it’s not greasy, please recycle)
  • Paper egg cartons
  • Napkins, tissues and paper towels (no chemical cleaners)
  • Toilet paper tube/roll and paper towel tubes/roll
  • Uncoated paper plates (Note: if labeled "grease resistant" or has decorative print it should go in trash)

Other compostable household Items (place in compostable bag)                                                                   compostable household items

  • Coffee grounds, filters, tea leaves and tea bags
  • Cotton balls and cotton swabs (paper middle)
  • Hair and nail clippings
  • House plant trimmings and flowers
  • Wooden chopsticks, popsicle sticks and toothpicks
  • Carved pumpkins and ornamental gourds
  • Certified compostable products (see below for details)

Certified compostable products (place in compostable bag)BPI Compostable logo

Compostable cups, plates, bowls, containers, parchment and wax paper, utensils, straws, and bags must be BPI certified compostable products in order to be accepted. Look for the BPI logo, shown to the right, on these products.

BPI certifies products for compostability through product testing done by an independent lab. The testing helps ensure the products break down properly during the composting process without leaving behind physical or chemical contaminants. To see a list of BPI certified products, view their online catalog of certified products.

IMPORTANT - Yard waste is no longer accepted in organics carts

Due to changes with the city’s composter, organics and yard waste will be collected separately beginning Jan. 1, 2019. After this date, residents with organics collection cannot include yard waste in their organics cart. See the yard waste page for yard waste set-out instructions. Organics carts containing yard waste will not be collected until yard waste is removed. For more information, visit the organics page.

Materials not accepted

These items were removed from the program and will not be accepted in 2019:

  • Yard waste (leaves, grass, sticks, etc.)

These items are recyclable and are not accepted:

  •  Cartons, glass, metal, paper and plastic

These items are considered trash and are not accepted:

  • Animal and pet waste, litter or bedding
  • Cleaning or baby wipes
  • Diapers
  • Dryer lint, dryer sheets
  • Fast food wrappers
  • Foam packaging
  • Frozen food boxes
  • Grease or oil
  • Gum
  • Microwave popcorn bags
  • Plastic garbage or shopping bags
  • Sanitary products
  • To-go coffee and soda cups (unless BPI certified compostable) 
  • Wax and parchment paper (unless BPI certified compostable)
  • Any products labeled “biodegradable”