Include the Food: Curbside Composting

Include the Food project logo.

​Food Scraps can be Composted in Kitsap County

Most single-family homes in Kitsap County can set up curbside composting collection  for food scraps and yard waste. Compostables are turned into soil products at a privately-run composting facility in Belfair, WA.

Read the FAQs below to learn what can and cannot be composted with this service.

Questions about composting? Email solidwaste@co.kitsap.wa.us or call Kitsap1 at 360.337.5777.

Can my home subscribe to curbside compost? Enter your address into our interactive curbside composting map to learn if your single-family home can receive curbside composting service.


 Which items can I compost in my cart?

Food scraps (including meat and dairy), napkins, paper towels, coffee filters, and yard waste are easy to compost. Remove shiny paper labels, stickers, plastic, metal, and glass. Don't put dirt or rocks in your compost cart.

Print a curbside composting guide to use in your home.

With a little extra care, the items listed below can also be composted. Please follow the instructions next to each item.

Pizza box

pizza boxes

Remove stickers or labels. Some pizza boxes have stickers that cannot be composted. Once stickers are removed, the pizza box can be composted. If the box isn't greasy, recycle it instead.
egg carton egg cartonsRemove label. Some egg cartons have plastic-coated labels that cannot be composted. If you can't easily remove the label, only compost the bottom of the carton.
shredded paper shredded paperKeep plastic out of your shredder. You can compost shredded paper if it does not contain plastic. Don't shred envelopes with windows or shiny paper mailers (these have plastic coatings). Recycle these instead.
tea bag tea bags ​Many tea bags are plastic and not compostable. Only compost tea bags that you're sure are paper. Plastic tea bags feel silky to the touch. Paper feel like tissue paper.
paper plate paper platesOnly uncoated paper plates. Many paper plates have a shiny plastic coating that cannot be composted. Coated plates look shiny. Uncoated paper plates are not shiny.
wooden chopsticks wooden chopsticks, popsicle sticks ​OK to compost.
weeds weedsOK to compost.
paper bags

​paper bags

​OK to compost. Use these to line your kitchen food scrap container.
compostable liner bagscompostable liner bags

Certified "BPI" only. Bags with the BPI-Certified Logo can be composted.

 ​ ​newspaper ​Remove glossy advertisement and inserts.
​paper take-out containers ​Plain brown boxes (similar texture to paper egg cartons) only. Remove all stickers and labels. Do not compost shiny to-go boxes, these are coated with plastic.

 Which items can't be composted?

​"Compostable or biodegradable plastic" serviceware, cups ​Not composted locally - put in the garbage. Our local composting facility does not accept these items. These are commonly found in Seattle and on ferries, and are often labeled "CEDAR GROVE." Includes take-out containers, take-out wrappers, compostable cups, and utensils.

cooking oil and grease

​Put cooled grease in a can with a lid and put in your garbage. You can recycle cooking oil for free at all county recycling facilities.
​pet waste and litter​Bag and put in the garbage.
glass, plastic, and metal​These damage composting equipment, ruin compost, and put compost users in danger. Recycle or toss appropriately.

 My cart is labeled "YARD WASTE ONLY." Can I put food in it?

Yes, as long as you follow these instructions and prevent any glass, plastic, or metal contamination.

 Where can I buy certified compostable bags?

"BPI certified" compostable bags are optional; you can also put food scraps directly into your cart or into a paper bag.

BPI certified compostable bags are sold in Kitsap County grocery and home stores near the garbage bags or in the natural home products section. Or by them online by searching for "BPA certified compostable bags."

 What container should I use in my kitchen?

Any sturdy container will work. Some people like small containers that they empty frequently, while others like larger containers that hold lots of scraps. To reduce odor, use a container you can store in your freezer or fridge.

Plastic ice cream buckets, metal or plastic coffee cans, or food storage containers are great inexpensive options. You can also purchase manufactured countertop compost containers online or in some local home goods stores.

 Why is composting food scraps important?

Composting food scraps is a great thing for the enenvironment.

Keep material out of the landfill. Around 42% of what the average Washington home trashes is organic waste that could have been composted.

Reduces greenhouse gas. Food scraps don't rot normally in the landfill because of the low oxygen conditions. Instead they produce methane gas, a potent greenhouse gas.

Reduces energy and emissions from transportation.  Garbage made in Kitsap County travels over 300 miles to a landfill in Oregon. The stuff you put in your compost cart is taken to Belfair for composting.

Keeps nutrients available. Compost is shown to increase crop yields, clean toxic stormwater runoff, and repair damaged soils. It's too valuable to waste.

 I don't produce many food scraps and I have a small yard - is this worth it?

Food scraps are heavier than other types of waste, so it takes lots of energy to transport them to the landfill. Sending even a small amount to the local composting facility makes a difference.

If you have a small yard and cannot fill your container with yard waste, consider teaming up with a neighbor to split the cost of a single compost cart.