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Curbside Hotline: 503-823-7202
1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 7100, Portland, OR 97201
YES! Food scraps include: Meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, bones, eggs and eggshells, cheese, dairy products, bread, baked goods, pasta, rice, beans, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruit, table scraps, plate scrapings, leftovers, spoiled food, and the like. Other:* Put only these types of food-soiled paper in curbside compost roll carts: coffee filters, tea bags, paper napkins, paper towels and pizza delivery boxes (remove any plastic or wax paper).
NO! Things to leave out:
“Compostable” containers, non-approved compostable plastic bags, pet waste, animal bedding (including straw and chicken manure), animal carcasses from hunting and fishing waste, fireplace ashes, metal and glass, textiles, clothing, linens, shoes, household garbage, fast food wrappers, packaging, takeout containers and waxed paper, facial tissue.
YES! Yard debris includes:
Weeds, leaves, vines, grass, small branches, flowers, house plants, plant clippings, fallen tree fruit, pumpkins.
NO! Things to leave out:
Dirt, rocks, sod, lumber, treated wood, sawdust, stumps, large branches (more than 4 in thick or 36 in long).
Kitchen compost container
While neither the City of Portland nor your garbage and recycling company provide kitchen pails, just about any container with a lid will work for collecting your food scraps. The key is to choose a size and location that makes it easy to use, to empty (into the green composting roll cart), and to keep clean. Metro sells the Sure Close kitchen composter for $8. Call 503-234-3000 for details.
Use an optional liner in your kitchen compost container. You can contain food with a few sheets of newspaper, a paper
bag or approved compostable bag to keep your food scraps from touching the inside of your green roll cart.
Look for these approved brands at a local grocery or hardware stores:
Note: These approved compostable bags are designed to break down quickly and safely at composting facilities. Other compostable bags and regular plastic bags are NOT allowed.
View videos on how to collect and compost food scraps, and how to keep containers clean.
Drain as much liquid as possible from food before putting in your container.
Wrap the food in newspaper and then place in your container.
Place food scraps in a container in the freezer and add them to the green roll cart the night before your pickup.
Empty and rinse out your container frequently, and sprinkle baking soda in it or rub vinegar on the inside of the lid to avoid odors and fruit flies.
Layer food scraps in between yard debris to reduce odors and to contain messier foods.
Store your cart in the shade in warm weather.
Use soap and water to clean the green roll cart. Pour dirty water onto grass or gravel, not down the storm drain.
Get your green roll cart cleaned for $12.50. Contact your garbage and recycling company to request this service.
Green compost roll carts must be used first so drivers know to stop for collection. Additional yard debris cans, Kraft bags, or bundles should be placed near the roll cart. You will be charged $3.75 for each one you put out for collection. Extra yard debris can also be saved for your next pick up or taken to a compost facility. To use an extra can, bag or bundle:
30-Gallon Kraft Paper Bag (no plastic bags)
Large amounts of yard debris
If you have a large amount of yard debris to dispose of, you can take the material to a yard debris processor or order a yard debris only drop box. Containers less than 3 cubic yards must be ordered from your garbage and recycling company.
Drop boxes larger than 3 cubic yards can be provided by your garbage and recycling company or any permitted company or drop box company.
Be sure to tell them the container is for yard debris only. There are specific weight limits for each container size and restrictions on the yard debris materials that can be placed in them. Be sure to get all the information and price quotes before delivery. Garbage or other restricted materials are not allowed in the drop box. You will incur additional charges if the container has to be taken to the transfer station for landfill disposal.
Yard debris reduction tips
Grow a healthy lawn and garden and reduce your yard waste by grasscycling. Leaving grass clippings on the lawn after you mow reduces clean-up time and the need for fertilizer. Clippings decompose and send valuable nutrients back to the soil.
Mow frequently (every five to six days). Set your mower to cut at the recommended height for your type of lawn. Never shorten the grass by more than one-third.
Learn more about how to manage pests, diseases and weeds in your garden without using pesticides.
Yard debris and food scraps go to Oregon commercial composting facilities with specialized processes to quickly break down the organic matter - even meat scraps and bones. Compost from these businesses is sold to landscapers and other agricultural users and available to residents.
Composting turns your yard trimmings and vegetable scraps into a nutrient-rich soil amendment for your yard and garden. When used as mulch, compost will reduce your need to water. Use it to enhance the soil, make a potting mixture, or mulch around plants and shrubs.