Organics Recycling Drop Sites
Lots of options exist for diverting organics (food scraps and soiled napkins/plates) from the waste stream. Convenient options also include drop sites where you drop off organics into carts/dumpsters.
Alex Area Organics Recycling Drop Site Ad
Organics Recycling Drop Site Locations
Take your properly bagged organics to a drop site near you.
- Alex Area – Pope/Douglas Solid Waste Recycling Center
- Organics Drop is NOW open!
- Open Monday-Friday 8-5 and Saturday 9-2. Closed major holidays.
- Located right next to the Household Hazardous Waste Facility in fenced area.
- More locations to come!
- Is your community interested in hosting a location to set secured carts to collect organics recycling?
- Contact Pope/Douglas for more information.
Organics Recycling Drop Site Guidelines
Pope/Douglas County residents can drop off organics as a free and easy way to recycle organics and reduce what you put in the garbage cart.
Collecting organics in your kitchen.
- Reuse an old coffee can or bucket.
- Purchase a countertop organics container.
- Reduce mess and odor by lining the container used with a paper bag or certified compostable bag.
- Make sure any compostable bags used have the BPI or Cedar Grove logo.
- All food, food scraps, peels, pits, etc.
- Coffee grounds, filters and teabags
- Paper towels, napkins and tissues
- Paper towel and toilet paper rolls
- Paper egg cartons
- Certified compostable products: Items with the BPI or Cedar Grove certified compostable logo on the product or packaging
- Hair and fur
- Popsicle sticks and toothpicks
- Houseplant trimmings and flowers
- Yard waste including pumpkins and garden plants
- Plastic bags
- Pet waste, litter or bedding
- Fast food wrappers
- Frozen food boxes
- Microwave popcorn bags
- Paper plates, bowls and cups without BPI or Cedar Grove certification
- Single-serve coffee pods (i.e., K-Cups® )
Where to Purchase Compostable Bags?
Reduce mess and odor by lining the container used with a paper bag or certified compostable bag.
Stop by one of these local stores to purchase compostable bags.
- Ace Hardware – Alexandria (763-5200)
- Elden’s Fresh Food – Alexandria (763-3446)
- Grain Bin – Alexandria (763-6876)
Not all bags are the same. Make sure any compostable bags used have the BPI or Cedar Grove logo. ‘Degradable’ is not the same as compostable as those bags will break down into smaller bits of plastic – which contaminates the finished compost.
Look for these logos below on packaging.
Compostable Products (plates/cups/utensils)
Certified compostable products (plates, bowls, cups, straws, cups, and utensils) must be used as part of your organics recycling.
Paper items that look shiny or have a smooth surface are typically coated with plastic layer, which is not accepted in your organics recycling, unless they are identified as being certified compostable. Using only compostable products ensures that the finished compost does not contain items that did not break down in the composting process.
If certified compostable products are not used, simply toss them in the garbage.
Look for these logos below on packaging.
Organics Drop Site Starter Recycling Kits Available
Pope/Douglas wants to make it easy for you to get started!
Stop by the Pope/Douglas Office/Household Hazardous Waste Facility to pick up your FREE starter kit.
Starter kit will include:
- Organics collection pail
- Compostable bags
- Informational brochure
- Packet of Zinnia seeds
Composting in your backyard is an affordable way to manage your yard waste and food scraps year-round. Backyard composting is not suitable for meats/bones and soiled papers as they don’t break down as readily.
Commercial composting operations adhere to strict processing procedures that allows those type of operations to accept meat/bone for composting. Backyard composting is not the same in that composting does not reach a sustained temp to kill pathogens.
Get more information below.
- Minnesota Pollution Control Agency on backyard composting
- University of MN Extension Composting and Mulching: A Guide to Managing Organic Yard Waste
Pope/Douglas does not sell compost bins. There are options below.
- RAM (Recycling Association of MN) hosts several events annually (selling compost bins and rain barrels).
How to Build Raised Garden Beds
Setting up organics recycling (food scraps, etc) is an important step. The use of finished compost that is created from the composting process and growing local foods is even better!
Build your own raised beds at your place of business, home or wherever to increase access to local foods, eat healthier and use the nutrient rich compost.
- Four 8 foot long 2-by-6s
- Two 8 foot long 2-by-6s cut in half
- One 6 foot long 4-by-4 cut into four 16” tall corner posts
- Weed suppressing landscape fabric
- 32 3” screws
- 32 cubic feet of finished compost
- Prepare the location by removing grass and weeds.
- Outline the bed dimensions on the ground using chalk or string.
- Dig along the outline using vertical strokes to bury about half of your first wood board.
- Put down a layer of newspaper or weed-suppressing landscape fabric that extends to the outside edges of the outline.
- Set a 4-foot 2-by-6 on its thin edge on pavement, and place a 16” post at one end. Secure post with two 3” screws. Repeat at other end of board. Repeat with other short board.
- Join short sides with an 8-foot board; and secure with two screws. Add other long side. Add second layer of 2-by-6s.
- Place the bed into the outline made in step 3.
- Fill the bed with potting soil.
- Alternative: amend soil with completed compost.
Pope/Douglas Solid Waste is in the planning stages of developing a regional organics composting site to have local access to compost for use in gardening and landscaping projects.