This project evaluated municipal compost use in agriculture by characterizing the nutrient and organic matter value on yield and soil quality. Economics and logistics of cost, transportation and handling these materials were also evaluated. Municipal compost includes combinations of leaf yard waste and food waste materials that have benefit for cash crop producers looking to increase organic matter levels in their soil.
Over 300,000 tonnes of organic waste gets diverted from Ontario landfills and provides over 55,000 T organic matter and over $5.25 million/year in crop available fertilizer equivalent. Greenbin compost provides nutrients and organic matter for crop land and can be an important component of improved soil resiliency especially when combined with crop rotations that include forages or cover crops and/or reduced tillage and residue management. This is similar to livestock farms that have access to manure. The agricultural trials were established to evaluate the nutrient and soil health benefits from adding municipal compost while determining if the logistics and cost of handling compost could be covered in yield and organic matter benefit.