The Compost Project

Community Compost Collection Service

We run a weekly collection of food scraps from households in the Mangawhai urban area. After a 6-month trial in early 2021, we established what capacity we can manage for such a service, and refined our process for producing amazing rich compost from household food waste.  The trial paved the way for our permanent collection service!

Until the end of July 2021, the collection will be weekly on Fridays.  This may be subject to change pending the feedback we get from the trial participants.

How does the collection work?



$4.50/wk or 19.50/month including bin & bag.  Your general waste costs will likely decrease too!


What's included:

A Sustainable Kaipara 23L lockable bin & a fresh compostable bag every week are provided.



We pick up weekly, on a Friday (your bin must be on the kerbside by 8am).



Most food scraps are accepted – see a comprehensive list below!

How to join the service

You can register your interest by filling in the form below.  There is limited capacity available at this stage and it is open to Mangawhai businesses and residences located in the Mangawhai urban area.  Once we hear from you, we will let you know if your registration is successful!

If you need more information, please contact Steph.

What we can accept for composting

Compost Trial FAQ

Why is composting important?

We believe food scraps should be seen as a resource rather than waste. By sending them to landfill this resource is not only wasted but as it breaks down it creates methane which is harmful to our environment. By composting our food scraps and combining with carbon sources like paper, saw dust, dried leaves, mulch etc we are creating richer more healthy soils to grow food in.  Many of our soils worldwide are very depleted and need the nutrients put back into them. Many of the minerals needed in the soils can be found all around us in things like seaweed, animal manure, comfrey leaves, fish bones and the list goes on!

Where will the compost be used?

So far we have mostly been gifting the compost to the Mangawhai community garden to feed their soils. They produce fruit and vegetables distributed to people in need in the community through the Te Whai Trust

We are now in the process of bagging up some of the compost to offer it for sale!  Join our newsletter to find out when you can purchase some!

Why is the service a paid service?

Currently this project is funded by the Ministry for the Environment, but we want to run this service long term and possibly replicate this model in other areas, which means it must sustain itself in the long term.

By paying for this service you are helping us towards paying the staff needed to operate the compost as well as the driver to pick up the food scraps. We also have admin costs and other general costs related to the compost system. Our hope is by taking food scraps out of your usual landfill service you will reduce the cost of your general waste, plus help the environment.

What day and how often will my bucket be collected?

We have been collecting buckets weekly on Friday mornings with buckets put out at the kerbside by 8am.  There will be a review of this at the end of our compost trial, and the day for collection may change pending feedback.

How do I keep food scraps and will it smell?

We recommend having a little compost bin or caddy in your kitchen and filling it with your scraps. Once this is full take it and empty it into the bag in the kerbside bin we have provided. Keep this in a cool place with lid closed. If you are concerned about smell you can place the scraps in the fridge or freezer and pop them into your bin on the day you put it out.

Can I put compostable packaging in my bucket?

 No. Unfortunately there is so much variety of compostable packaging out there that it’s very hard to know which ones are and which one aren’t truly compostable.

Can I use a compostable bin liner in my kitchen caddy and then place that in the bag inside the kerbside bin?

We are asking that people do not use additional compostable bin liners.

These bags are a real effort to compost, so we want to only take the one we provide with our bins. You are welcome to put a paper towel or thin layer of newspaper at the bottom of your kitchen caddy to help keep it clean, or just give it a quick rinse after you empty it out each time.