The Shelburne Falls Compost Collaborative (SFCC) has been successfully operating for almost six years! We are composting over 150 cubic yards of material each year; all saved from the landfill and instead made into compost.

SFCC is expanding; please join us! Shelburne Falls Compost Collaborative is a true community effort, currently supported by: Hearty Eats, Mocha Maya’s, Mo's Fudge Factor, The Blue Rock Restaurant, Vävstuga Weaving School, and West End Pub. The program was launched in 2010 by The Greater Shelburne Falls Area Business Association (GSFABA), Franklin County Solid Waste Management District (FCSWMD), and ECS, Inc. In 2012 the Bridge of Flowers gardeners joined SFCC free of charge. Mirick Insurance adds shredded paper. The Town of Shelburne hosts the compost dumpster in a town parking lot; an additional dumpster on the Buckland side is in the planning stages.

SFCC participants share a “commercial compost” dumpster for food and paper waste. The dumpster is emptied once a week by a compost hauler that is already in town to service McCusker’s Market. The materials are taken to Martin’s Farm Compost and Mulch in Greenfield, where they are transformed into nutrient-rich compost.

Because the material is processed at an on-farm facility, a wide range of organically-based wastes can be composted. ALL food waste, including items not recommended for home composting such as meat, poultry, bones, dairy, fats and oily foods, can be composted at a commercial composting facility – no sorting! All paper wastes are acceptable, such as paper napkins, paper towels, paper cups, plates and waxed cardboard, (items that are not recyclable and usually destined for the trash.) Also accepted: plant waste, shredded paper, compostable plastics, and small pieces of wood.

60-80% of a restaurant’s solid waste is food, according to the EPA. Paul St. Martin of the West End Pub said that for the last five years his restaurant has been able to compost by “keeping separate bins and having employees put plate scrapings and food in one and all the non-compostable items in the other. The best part is we cut our trash in half.”

Cost: The total cost of the dumpster is $82.50/month in winter and $138/month in summer. Businesses split those costs according to their estimated volumes; members are asked to measure volumes when they join and again every year or two. FCSWMD invoices businesses quarterly; a $10 administrative fee per business per year is charged.

Schedule: From June-October, the dumpster is emptied every Wednesday morning; in the winter, every other Weds.
Training: FCSWMD provides a (voluntary) free training for your employees, customized to your business and scheduled at your convenience. Yes/No lists are provided to all participants.

Publicity: Customers appreciate green businesses!
· Webpage:
· Members receive logo stickers for entrances, doors, counters, etc. (The logo is above right.) The logo can be emailed for use on your website, menu, Facebook page, etc.
· FCSWMD coordinates occassional press releases, articles, advertisements, etc. See the case study on the Northeast Recycling Council website (p. 6-7):

Local businesses have joined together to reduce waste by 50% or more, and to help slow climate change: food and paper waste sent to landfills emits methane, a heat-trapping greenhouse gas 23 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
Please join us! Contact Amy Donavan for more information or to join:, 413-772-2438.

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