Greater New Bedford Regional Refuse Management District photo.

Pilot food waste drop-off program in Dartmouth

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There’s a better place for your banana peels, coffee grounds, meat, and moldy strawberries.

“Description automatically generated with low confidenceDartmouth, Massachusetts – Beginning June 18, 2024, Dartmouth residents can drop off food waste at the Dartmouth Transfer Station! This pilot program will help participants reduce waste and purchase fewer orange SMART program trash bags since your food waste will be composted separately.

Items you can drop off include all unpackaged food, bones, and coffee grounds. Examples: fruits, vegetables, peels, meat, chicken bones, seafood shells, eggshells, dairy, breads, grains, and baked goods. The food can be in any condition or past its expiration date. The unpackaged food can be loose, or in BPI certified compostable bags. Visit bpiworld.org for more information on BPI.

“About 20% of what residents dispose of is food waste. This program will help residents reduce waste at home, save money by using fewer orange SMART program trash bags, and keep food waste out of the Crapo Hill Landfill,” said Timothy Barber, Director of the Town of Dartmouth’s Department of Public Works.


Greater New Bedford Regional Refuse Management District photo.

The less that is added to the landfill, the longer it will last. When the landfill reaches capacity, new options will need to be found for managing our waste. These options will very likely be more expensive than the current costs at our local landfill.

Description automatically generatedThe Dartmouth Transfer Station is at 976 Russells Mills Road. The hours are Tuesday and Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., and Saturday 7:30 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. A transfer station permit is required to use the facility.

Starter Kits
To kick off the program, 100 free starter kits are being distributed to SMART Program participants, while supplies last. Each kit includes a kitchen counter bin, roll of compostable bags, and a 5-gallon bucket for transporting the accepted waste to the Dartmouth Transfer Station.

Beginning June 17, 2024, starter kits are available at the Dartmouth Department of Public Works, 759 Russells Mills Road, Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Proof of residency is required. On advertised Saturdays that the DPW office opens for residents to obtain program year 2024-2025 transfer station permits, starter kits will also be available, while supplies last.

Here’s how to use your starter kit:

1. Find a spot for your kitchen bin. Line it with a BPI certified compostable bag.
2. Fill the kitchen bin with accepted materials (see below for details).
3. When the container is almost full, tie off the compostable bag and place it into the 5-gallon bucket.
4. When the 5-gallon bucket is almost full, take it to the Dartmouth Transfer Station.

Don’t have a starter kit? You can put food in any container such as a bowl and line it with a BPI certified compostable bag. Or don’t line it all. Any bucket will work to transport the food waste to the Dartmouth Transfer Station. Extra rolls of compostable bags are available at the DPW, while supplies last.

Again, items you can drop off include all unpackaged food, bones, and coffee grounds. Examples: fruits, vegetables, peels, meat, chicken bones, seafood shells, eggshells, dairy, breads, grains, and baked goods. This can be loose, or in BPI certified compostable bags.

Materials not accepted include packaged foods, plastic bags, produce stickers, cleaning chemicals, diapers, glass, pet waste, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, plates, cups, utensils, recycling, trash, and yard waste.

Black Earth Compost

The carts designated for food waste are emptied weekly by a partnering company called Black Earth Compost. The food waste becomes nutrient-rich soil amendment, which can be used for improving soil health, gardening, and growing more food!

For more information, call the Greater New Bedford Regional Refuse Management District at (508) 979-1493, or email Marissa@gnbrrmdistrict.org.”

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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