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Huskies Kick Off Composting Campaign

Free compost for participating Seattle/King County residents

King County Solid Waste Division, Seattle Public Utilities and Cedar Grove today announced a new effort to reduce the 300,000 tons of food waste sent to landfills each year, and to boost compost use in the fall — an important but often overlooked composting season. The “Compost Quarterback” campaign partners with University of Washington Husky football and local businesses to motivate residents to step up food scrap recycling, use compost in their yards and gardens this fall, and keep non-compostables such as plastics out of food and yard waste carts.

“King County residents are doing a great job putting their food scraps and food-soiled paper in their yard waste carts, and creating nutrient-rich compost,” said Kevin Kiernan, Director of the King County Solid Waste Division. “With the Compost Quarterback campaign we are taking it to the next level to emphasize what should and should not go in the yard waste cart, and to promote the benefits of using compost.”

Through Oct. 15, consumers can participate in the Compost Quarterback campaign by visiting the Cedar Grove Composting website, where they can take an online quiz to test their compost and food scrap recycling knowledge and receive a free bag of compost. Website visitors can also enter to win weekly Husky game tickets paired with offers from partners including Ace Hardware, Fred Meyer, McLendon Hardware, QFC and Zeeks Pizza. One lucky winner will get the grand prize—an Apple Cup Prize package which includes two tickets to the game between UW and Washington State University in Pullman, a $100 gas card and a $100 QFC gift card.

The campaign will kick off at the Huskies’ “Sustainability Day” football game on Sept. 15 at CenturyLink Field, where fans can participate in a food waste toss on the North Plaza and receive free tulip “SuperBulbs” for springtime blossoms in Husky purple or gold.

“Our region is fortunate to have curbside collection of food scraps, which are then turned into compost at local facilities and sold at local retailers – a closed loop that reduces waste, protects our soil and water quality, and helps local gardens thrive,” said Tim Croll, Solid Waste Director of Seattle Public Utilities. “That’s why we want to reward people for taking action, and increase the use of compost throughout the year.”

Roughly one-third of the garbage created by residents in King County is made up of compostable food waste. The average single family household throws away about 45 pounds of food scraps and food-soiled paper each month, which totals about 300,000 tons of compostable material each year countywide. This year the County launched its One Less Bag Challenge, to encourage residents to take a pledge to reduce the amount of recyclable and compostable items going into the dumpster.

By increasing the production and use of compost, communities can prevent pesticide use, create healthy soils for optimal planting and growth, and prevent erosion and runoff.

“While adding compost to your garden in the spring is now common, many people aren’t aware that fall is an important season to build your garden’s soil nutrients,” said John Inge of Cedar Grove Composting. “We think this campaign to educate and engage the public in the fall will result in more gardens with optimal, healthy soils for planting and growth next spring.”

Go to or call 1-877-764-5748 for more information on the Compost Quarterback campaign.