San Francisco Department of the Environment

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How can I start composting in my kitchen?

1. Get a container to store your food scraps in the kitchen.

Compost storage methods:

  • Use a soiled cardboard to-go container or a milk carton, newspaper, or a reusable container (rinse as needed).
  • Freeze your compostables and avoid all liners! Freezing compost prevents leaks and smells.
  • Request a compost pail from Recology online or call (415) 330-1300. Compostable bags to line your pail are available at most grocery stores and drug stores in the city (make sure they are certified “compostable”).


2. Learn what items can go in the green bin.

Meat, coffee grounds, greasy pizza boxes, hair, tissues, chop sticks, and soiled cardboard to-go containers can all go in the compost. Learn more about what goes in the green bin

3. Treat yourself with some local produce or wine!

Your food scraps get turned into rich, organic compost that serves as an environmentally-friendly way to fertilize local crops of fruits, vegetables, and grapes for wine. 





Our home. Our city. Our planet.