Organics Implementation – Best Practices

The January 1 2015 organics ban in Metro Vancouver is now in effect. Are you prepared?

Waste Management has been successfully providing this service to multifamily buildings for over 3 years. Here are some best practices to ensure a positive impacting implementation of this new service to your buildings:

Education, Education, Education!

One of the main fears in implementing organics is: “we cannot even recycle paper and containers, how will we ever do organics!” If you assume the building has not received effective training for its residents on paper and containers; this would explain why they still struggle with fundamental recycling. Education is the key to success. What does that look like:

Champion on council that is accountable for the implementation. This person will manage an impactful launch of the program and monitor its success in the short and medium term to create long term success!

Official launch to show how important this program is for the building. This will allow a forum to discuss concerns and fears being proactively addressed with each resident!

Notices/posters developed for the building and garbage room area to create visibility

Education is about winning “hearts and minds”. Whether the education is based on “sustainability” messaging or the impact of poor behavior on the pocket book, it needs to connect the dots!

Mistakes Occur In The Unit!

How the organic material is captured goes a long way to impacting the overall success of the program. What does success look like: High level of resident participation and minimal “smell, contamination or infestation!” WM’s extensive experience has confirmed an in home receptacle used by residents is critical to the proper capturing of the material. WM promotes the attached SureClose receptacle as it is sturdy; locking (in case it is dropped in your building the material will not fall out and create a huge mess) and perforated to allow airflow – which helps dry material.

This ensures material is collected and disposed of with minimal smell, infestation and contamination. When residents are confident with their organic program, there is a much greater interest in participation!

Dry material = Less odours

The drier the organic material captured by residents, the less odours. This means residents need to pour all liquid down the drain; wrap their food in newspaper to soak up any moisture and throw material into the central toter frequently. If residents are particularly concerned about the food, they can wrap this in newspaper and put it in the freezer, until they have time to throw it into their organic toter.

Just Say No To: Plastic; Glass and Metal

These are the three main things to avoid to make your program a true success. Don’t forget this is one service you do not want interrupted, because your organic toter is contaminated and cannot be picked up by your service provider!

Watch this video and find out more:

Useful Information for Metro Vancouver Residents:

Organic Pamphlet
Organics Disposal Ban Information Package

This article was brought to you by:
Tanya Stewart-Higgs
Functional Sales Manager at Waste Management


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