Rebuilding the soil in western Queens
The NYC Compost Project hosted by Big Reuse is part of a community-scale composting network that works to rebuild our soils by providing New Yorkers with the knowledge, skills, and opportunities they need to produce and use compost locally. We host weekly food scrap drop-off locations, train New Yorkers in urban composting best practices, and produce high-quality compost. The finished compost is used in community gardens, on street trees, and in public beautification projects.
You can help reduce the burden on our landfills and cut methane emissions! Bring your food scraps to one of our 14 drop-off sites throughout western Queens and north Brooklyn.
We compost food scraps locally at our processing site under the Queensboro Bridge in LIC. Last year, we diverted over 1 million pounds of organic waste from landfills by turning it into nutrient rich compost!
We help improve the soil in our neighborhood by distributing our finish compost via donation to community greening groups and our volunteer powered tree-care events.
One of our most frequently asked questions from new program participants is, "How do I save my food scraps at home?" Another common question from seasoned participants is, "How can I reduce my plastic bag use?" We've compiled a list of options for you! Whatever method you decide on, we thank you so much for participating! You are an essential part of the process to help rebuild our soils!
Yes you can! We accept yard waste at staffed drop-off sites! Here are suggestions to ensure that your yard waste is composted.
- Please limited your drop off to no more than two large yard bags per drop-off period.
- Use paper yard refuse bags such as these. They save space in our bins and are fully compostable.
- Please do not bring your yard waste to our Big Reuse Queens, Big Reuse Brooklyn, or our partnered drop-off sites (Junkluggers).
- Please do not leave yard waste at the drop-off site unless a staff member is available to accept your drop-off.
You can find a map of all the food scrap drop-off sites in NYC at nyc.gov/zerowaste.
Making great compost takes a lot of hands in NYC. Each week, thousands of New Yorkers visit NYC Compost Project food scrap drop-off sites, bringing with them bags and boxes of organic materials they have carefully separated in kitchens from Forest Hills to Greenpoint. At food scrap drop-off sites, residents empty containers of frozen food scraps into big green bins, but where do they go at the end of the day? Dropping off food scraps is the just first step in making great soil for NYC.
On an average day, NYC Compost Project staff load the green food scrap bins on our truck and take them to our compost site in Long Island City underneath the Queensboro Bridge. We work at the site every day of the week to ensure the best possible conditions for our decomposers, our neighbors, our staff, and volunteers. Over the years we have grown from using solely hand tools, to using several hi-tech tools to help us (and our backs) make compost for NYC soils.
Commercial waste collection in NYC must be contracted through private haulers. You can find out how to ensure that your organic waste gets carted to a composting facility at nyc.gov/zerowaste.
Yes you can! The NYC Compost Project hosted by Big Reuse distributes finished compost processed at our Queensbridge facility on a request-only basis.
Please keep in mind that we only distribute compost to community greening groups. We cannot offer our compost to individuals or commercial groups. If you are unsure whether your group qualifies, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.