Our compost is only as good as the materials it is made from.

Help keep our product great by properly sorting your waste.

Yes, please!

  • All foods

  • Meat

  • Bones

  • Shellfish

  • Eggs and eggshells

  • Vegetables

  • Beans

  • Grains

  • Bread, flour, pasta and cereals.

  • Coffee grounds and filters

  • Tea and tea bags

  • Food soiled paper products

  • Compostable plastics and packaging.

  • Tree debris


No, Thank You!

  • Non-compostables

  • Glass

  • Metal

  • Clean, recyclable paper

  • Plastics

  • Plastic foams

  • Juice boxes and pouches

  • Milk cartons

  • Rubber bands

  • Twist ties

  • Produce stickers

  • Animal feces

  • Cat litter

  • Medical waste

  • Hazardous waste (cleaning supplies and other chemicals)

  • Electronic waste

A Guide to Compostable Bags and Serviceware

We know you want to do the right thing, and we know that it can be confusing. With all the different products out there, how do you know if you are buying the right ones? Take a moment to read our guidelines. If you still have questions, do not hesitate to send us an email.

If you are ever unsure, your safest choice is to use a certified compostable product. You can browse the Biodegradable Products Institute catalog to confirm whether your product is “certified compostable”.

Paper Products

Sustainable Materials Management, Inc. accepts food soiled paper products. These paper products do not have to be certified compostable, but must adhere to the following guidelines:


  • Food soiled paper or cardboard (pizza boxes, paper clam shell boxes, etc.)

  • “Certified Compostable” products.

  • Bagasse, wheat straw, bamboo, etc.

  • Parchment Paper


  • Glossy paper (magazines)

  • Wax coated paper

  • Plastic lined or coated paper

Wood Products

Sustainable Materials Management, Inc. accepts all food-safe wood products. If they are safe for food, they are safe for us.


Sustainable Materials Management only accepts certified compostable plastics. These certified compostable plastics must be easily distinguishable from their non-compostable counterparts. For example: a compostable clear plastic cup must have some marking (a green line) that makes it easily distinguishable from a regular plastic cup.

Plastics: Compostable vs. Biodegradable

What’s the difference? Why does it matter? It matters because the material we accept affects the quality of the compost we produce. We will not risk the quality and safety of our compost product with untested products. Check out this article for more information.


  • Made from strictly plant based materials

  • Breaks down in a similar time as paper products

  • Breaks down into compost

  • Meets U.S. Standards ASTM-6400 and European Norm 13432.


  • Does not need to be made from strictly plant based material—may still contain petroleum based plastics.

  • Does not have a limit on how long it takes to break down.

  • Typically has additives that break down cause the plastic into smaller pieces.

  • Does not meet ASTM-6400 or European Norm 13432 standards,