Curbside compost pick-up coming to West Chester. Photo: Avi Loren Fox

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Some exciting news for those of you patiently waiting for a compost collection service willing to collect in the borough – the wait is over! Beginning this week Mother Compost, a locally-owned, female-run food waste collection service currently servicing the Main Line, is accepting West Chester customers. 

I know. I know. We’ve been here before. So, this week, when I got Tiffany Kennedy, Mother Compost Director of Internal Operations, on the phone the first question I asked was, – are you sure you can handle us? 

Tiffany, who is also a West Chester resident and very familiar with this area’s compost collection trials and tribulations, assured me they were ready. 

“I can confidently say we are ready,” she said. “We have all the proper equipment and staff in place to handle this expansion toward West Chester.”

Not only are they ready; they have been waiting. “We’ve had a lot of interest from people. We have been in touch with the Borough, and while this is not a partnership, they are excited.” 

Now that we have that out of the way, the service sounds great. It’s a monthly subscription with bi-weekly pickups. All new sign-ups get a one-month free trial and new West Chester subscribers that sign up by March 31 get 30 lbs of compost free. (A special arrangement for new West Chester customers. Each year regular subscribers can request up to 60 lbs of complimentary compost but these requests must be made by January so the team can manage delivery.) 

Not sure how much food waste your family generates – there is a helpful survey on the website to help you judge. It’s also part of the reason they offer the trial period. “If you start with one bucket and then you realize, ‘Hey, we need two?’ You can just contact our team and we’ll drop you a second bucket,” said Tiffany.

And what about the smell? 

“There is this stigma that compost is dirty and gross and stinky. Of course, there’s a bucket here and there, but ultimately, it’s not that gross. Compost has a dirty rep. Compost isn’t dirt. Dirt is dead soil. Compost is living, amazing soil that helps our food grow. There isn’t a dirty thing about compost,” said Tiffany. It also significantly helps reduce your weekly waste. According to the Mother Compost website, the average American throws away 30 pounds of garbage a week. Of that, at least 20 percent could be composted.

All that aside, the buckets seal tight, and most people store the larger containers outside with a separate smaller receptacle kept inside. ”If you’re concerned about smells, just take it out on a more frequent basis,” says Tiffany. We have been composting for a few years now and I highly recommend you get one of these to store kitchen scraps. (Bonus, it’s on sale!)   

This story is just one part of a longer weekly West Chester newsletter. Curious what else is going on? You can find the full issue here. To get the latest issue delivered directly to your inbox, you can subscribe here.

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