Adventures in Composting

January 10, 2011

At Dodge, we have a staff “Green Team” which meets monthly to discuss and improve our green practices. We focus on a variety of areas, including how to green our Poetry Festival, how to choose office supplies, what we can learn from urban gardening, and what we call “Whole Person” measures, addressing our physical and mental health needs, so that we can be productive employees.

One of the new initiatives of the Green Team for 2011 is to compost. Although we’ve been composting our food on a small scale for awhile, one of our colleagues has always taken the waste home to her own compost pile. Now we’ve got this terrific new tool, a Nature Mill composter, for helping us compost our food scraps quickly and turning it into soil that we can use for our rooftop garden.

Nature Mill Composter in Dodge Foundation Kitchen 4 Nature Mill Composter in Dodge Foundation Kitchen 3
Nature Mill Composter in Dodge Foundation Kitchen 2 Nature Mill Composter in Dodge Foundation Kitchen

We can lift the top lid and throw food waste in there anytime, and an automatic motor mixes, heats and aerates it, eventually turning it into soil, which it deposits into a lower chamber with a pull out bin.

What we like about the composter is how quickly it breaks down the waste into compost and that it composts dairy, meat and fish, in addition to the more traditional items like fruit, vegetables and coffee grounds. And, of course, no worms or bugs necessary!

We’re just getting the hang of this – trying to get familiar with what we should be putting in it, remembering to put our lunch waste in it every day – and we look forward to using the soil for our garden this spring and summer. We’ll keep you posted on our progress!

Do you compost at home? Have any composting tricks to share with readers?

And, how green is your workplace – does your office have eco-friendly practices? We’d like to hear! Please let us know in the comments below.

You can learn more about Nature Mill composters from their website.