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Organic Waste Collection

FAQ

Collection

Why have an organic waste collection?

When organic waste is buried, it produces a lot of greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change. The organic waste collection therefore aims to:

  • Cut down on the amount of waste sent to landfill.
  • Reduce greenhouse gases.
  • Produce compost to enrich soil
  • Reduce landfill-related costs.

What is organic waste?

Organic waste is made up of green waste (leaves, garden waste) and food scraps (leftovers, fruits, vegetables, etc.).

For the complete list of materials accepted, click here.

For whom is the organic waste collection intended?

The organic waste collection service is intended for all residential buildings with 8 housing units or less.

What happens to the organic waste collected?

Organic waste disposed of in the bins is sent to a processing plant in order to convert it to compost—a natural fertilizer. This compost is used to enrich the soil in parks and other green spaces in the city. It is also offered free of charge to residents on compost giveaway days.

Which waste materials are accepted and which are not?

Click here for the complete list of which materials are and are not accepted in the collection.

Kitchen bin

Do we have to use the kitchen bin?

You are given a kitchen bin free of charge to make it easier for you to collect the waste materials inside your home; however, you may use any another container that is suitable to your needs.

How should we use the kitchen bin?

You may place your leftovers in the kitchen bin as well as your food scraps from preparing meals. The kitchen bin may then be emptied into the brown bin, at your convenience.

Where should the kitchen bin be placed?

To make it easier to collect food scraps, you may place your kitchen bin in a location that is within easy reach—either on your kitchen counter or underneath the sink.

Brown bin

Do we have to use the brown bin?

Under Bylaw 16-049 on collection services, it is prohibited to place organic materials out for pick-up in a collection other than the one specifically carried out for organic materials. Use of the brown bin is therefore necessary for buildings with 1 to 8 units.

How should we use the brown bin?

Organic waste (green waste and food scraps) must be placed in the brown bin outside for the weekly collection.

Where should the brown bin be stored?

You may store your brown bin next to your other bins. It is preferable to leave it in the shade.

How should the brown bin be washed?

Clean your bin regularly with water and light detergent or white vinegar.

My bin is too small/big. Can I change it?

It is possible to change the size of the bin. Fees may apply. Please call 311.

My bin has been stolen. Can I receive a new one?

Call 311.

My bin is broken. Can I receive a new one?

Call 311.

I'm moving. Should I bring my brown bin with me?

If you move, the brown bin must be left at the address where it was delivered. An electronic chip and a serial number link it to the delivery address.

I already have a backyard composter. Do I have to take part in the collection?

You may continue using your backyard composter. You will be able to use the brown bin to place food scraps such as meat that shouldn't be put in the backyard composter.

Collections schedule

What is the schedule of the organic waste collection?

Organic waste placed in the brown bins is collected once a week, on the same day as recyclables.

Bags

Can compostable plastic bags be used?

The organic waste collected in Saint-Laurent is sent to the Mironor composting centre, which doesn't accept compostable plastic bags due to the provincial standards set in 2008 by the Québec government's Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques.

These guidelines prohibit compostable plastic bags at Mironor.

Only paper bags are accepted at this composting centre.

Why do other boroughs accept biodegradable plastic bags?

Some borough send their organic waste to a different composting centre where compostable plastic bags are accepted.

Why is organic waste from the various boroughs in the City sent to different composting centres?

Greater Montréal (the boroughs and related municipalities) is divided into two sectors: east and west. Different calls for tender were issued for each sector. Two different companies were therefore awarded the contract for recovering organic waste in each sector. Mironor was the only company that submitted a tender for the western sector.

Are we allowed to use paper bags?

Yes. It is not required that paper bags be used, but it is recommended for health reasons.

Must I use paper bags?

It is not required that paper bags be used, but it is recommended for health reasons. You can also use newspaper or carboard (boxes, wrapping, etc.) to cover the bottom of the bin or to wrap organic waste.

Where can I obtain paper bags for the bins?

Paper bags are available at some big-box stores, hardware stores, pharmacies and grocery stores. They are also available at Éco-quartier de Saint-Laurent. We recommend you call before to make sure bags are still available.

Are bags for disposing of leaves still available?

For green waste that doesn't fit into your bin—such as leaves, for example— Saint-Laurent supplies free paper bags at Borough Hall and at Éco-quartier (maximum 10 bags per year, per buildings).

Odours

How can we prevent odours in the bin?

Click here for tips and tricks.

Animals and insects

How can we keep little animals away (squirrels, racoons)?

Click here for tips and tricks.

How can we prevent maggots?

Click here for tips and tricks.

Video

  • Message from the Mayor of Saint-Laurent

See also

Publications