Star City Compost creates the first composting company in Roanoke Valley

ROANOKE, Va. – Star City Compost is turning your trash into treasure for your garden by creating Roanoke Valley’s first composting facility.

The company opened earlier this year.

Composting is the process of turning food waste into soil. Owner Davey Stewards said it’s great for the environment and it also helps you.

“We don’t need to put all of these synthetic fertilizers in our agriculture system if we are composting. Now, what composting does, is it builds the microbial content in the soil and it builds the life in the soil. A lot of science has gone into showing what actually makes really healthy plants that are really good for your gut and really good for you is the biological content in the soil,” said Stewards.

He also said if we compost, we won’t have to be dependent on other countries to help grow our food.

“We have to mine all of our phosphorus and potassium from places like Indonesia, and Colombia and Argentina because they’re not just readily available, but you know, where they are they’re actually in all of our food waste,” said Stewards.

Star City Compost offers curbside pickup for residents for $25 a month. During the week, you’ll fill up a bucket with all of your food waste and then the company will collect it weekly. There are also several locations where you can drop off your food waste at designated drop-off locations for $10 a month.

The company also picks up food waste from local businesses, such as the Local Environmental Agriculture Project. Stewards said they have collected about 1,000 pounds of food from these two companies. However, he said they need more people to participate.

Communications Manager Christina Nifong with LEAP, a food distribution center and food hub, said it’s great to have the company pick up their waste.

“There’s a lot of food coming in and going out from our food hub. We are super careful about making sure to use all of it and waste almost none of it, but inevitably, there is food waste, and we want that food waste to be turned into something that can be a soil amendment that can be a positive for the community for farmers and for growers and this is a way to do it,” said Nifong.

Star City Compost also picks up from Blue Ridge Catering.

“In the food industry, we waste a lot of food and it’s nice to have a program in place to be able to recycle the food and not have too much waste to see that it’s going back to something that’s in the community helps,” said Catering Chief and Event Lead Dorian Braica.

Stewards said they are still in the process of making the compost, but they hope to have it ready by summer. He said he hopes to sell it to residents. You can use the compost in your garden. It’s a great way to add nutrients back into your soil.

About the Author

Keshia Lynn is a Multimedia Journalist for WSLS. She was born and raised in Maryland and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Society from American University and a Master’s degree in Mass Communication from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism.

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