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Most Awesome Cycling Jersey in Compost History!

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Like banana peels? Think green spandex is rad? Want to support bike-powered neighborhood bucket slinging? You’re in luck!

We’re now taking orders for the most awesome jersey (custom super-“green” C’sC bottoms also available) in compost history.


$55 (Jersey)
+ $5 (Shipping)
+ $15 (donation to support Carter’s Compost)
= $75

Here’s How It Works:

1. Choose your size and cut (Race or Club). Details HERE.

Bottoms also available:

See different options of bibs, knickers, shorts here: Choose your pad type.

Cost of bottoms + $5 + $15 = Total

2. Email your pre-order to us at

3. Once 10 pieces are pre-ordered to reach the minimum, we’ll put the order in.

4. Send your payment to:

Carter’s Compost
841 Washington St.
Traverse City, MI, 49686

Checks made payable to: Carter’s Compost

PayPal also available with a $5 service fee.

5. We’ll ship (worldwide if needed) or drop-off your gear if local. Expect at least 6-8 weeks from the time the order is placed.

6. Wear your C’sC jersey with pride and be the envy of your riding buddies. Give yourself pat on the back for being so awesome and supporting bike-powered neighborhood bucket slinging.

Back of Jersey:

Raglan Jersey



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Carter’s Compost : Oryana Community Partner


We love our Co-Op. Oryana is one of TC’s most awesome places. Top 5 for sure.

They sponsor bike-powered neighborhood bucket slinging, host Compost Fiestas and celebrate dirt. They build legit Community Compost Stations, grow native plants and perennials in their commemorative garden and are true Compost Champions.

They support bike friendly events like TART’s SmartCommute, Norte! TC‘s Winter Bike To Work (or School!) Day and our Tour de Pile last spring.

They cook yummy food in their cafe, make fantastic tofu, carry healthy snacks and local fruits/veggies, give you a discount if you ride your bike, and accept BayBucks. They even let you have a free piece of fruit when you’re shopping with your mum!

So we are proud to officially be an Oryana Community Partner.

This entitles all fellow Oryana members to one free month of bike-powered kitchen scrap pick-ups per year.

It isn’t a lot but we’re happy to give back as a small Thank You to our Co-Op.

Keep Awesome and Compost On!, Oryana.

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Traverse City’s Household Kitchen Scrap Composting Rate


Thanks to everyone (N = 648!…how awesome is that?!?) for taking my survey and helping me with my 4th grade science fair project. I got an A+!

Here’s the information that I had up on my Project Board:

What is Traverse City’s household kitchen scrap composting rate?

Due to my experience as a Compost Boy, I predict that Traverse City’s household kitchen scrap composting rate will be 30%.

30-40% of household waste in the U.S. is compostable. Food waste makes up 21% of what goes into landfills for a total of 36,000,000 tons every year. The total recovery of food waste is only 1.6% but there are cities that are very compost friendly like Madison, WI. Their household composting rate is 35%.

I designed a scientific online survey on It had 22 questions about composting, gardening and demographics. I researched other municipal composting surveys including one from Madison, WI. I shared my survey via email, social media, my Carter’s Compost website, and through Grand Traverse County’s Recycle Smart newsletter. I sent a test survey to several organizations including GT County’s Resource Recovery department who gave me feedback on my survey questions. The survey was open for one month. Even though I only measured Traverse City’s rate, I allowed all Grand Traverse residents to take part so I could establish data for future studies.

N = 305 (TC residents only)
“YES, I’ve composted my kitchen scraps in the past year” 72%
“NO, I haven’t composted my kitchen scraps in the past year” 28%
5.55% Margin of Error at 95% Confidence Interval

Backyard Pile 53%
Plastic Commercially Made Bin 28%
Pick-up Service 25%
Drop-off at Community Pile/Share with Neighbor 18%
Worm Bin/Vermicomposting 9%

“Reduce my waste” 84%
“Nourish my plants naturally” 65%
“Contribute to my ecosystem at home by being responsible for the entire cycle of my food” 61%
“Save landfill space” 60%
“Cut down on greenhouse gas emissions (compostable items in landfills emit methane)” 32%
“Teach your kids that their waste is a resource” 29%
“Reduce groundwater pollution (toxins leaching from landfills into the environment)” 22%
“Save money on fertilizer for your garden” 19%

“I don’t know how” 43%
“I don’t have enough space” 39%
“I’m afraid of attracting pests/critters” 30%
“I’m too busy. I don’t have enough time” 28%
“It’s too icky and it smells” 17%

Veggie Scrap 81%
Meat and Dairy scraps 17%

64% of TC composters have a garden
87% of these gardeners have a garden less than 500 sq feet
77% buy compost
94% make their own compost

40 to 59 years old
Lives in a single family home
Has an advanced college degree
Earns 50,000 to 75,000 per year
Prepares more than 14 meals at home/week

Although the data set is large with 305 respondents from Traverse City allowing me to have a low margin of error and high confidence interval, my sample was not random. The survey was shared online with my Carter’s Compost members, friends, supporters and sponsors . I was unable to get outside of my circle of friends. Apparently, with a 72% rate, all of my Traverse City friends are composters. This is a serious weakness of my survey because the data is skewed. Maybe if I randomly chose names from the phone book or stood outside the library, that would have provided more accurate results.

I guessed that we would have a higher than average household composting rate because Traverse City is a very environmentally friendly city and there is a lot of demand for my kitchen scrap pick-up service. I predicted 30% but my survey found the rate to be 72%. Due to that fact my sample was not random, I think 72% is too high. Based on these results, I also now think that 30% is probably too low. Traverse City is very compost friendly!

Bar Graphs for all questions can be found here:

Full Results from all Grand Traverse Respondents here:

What do you think TC’s actually household kitchen scrap composting rate is?

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2013 Take It Back “Recycler Of The Year”


We’re stoked to be Grand Traverse County’s Resource Recovery Council’s 2013 Take It Back “Recycler Of the Year“. We scored a ginormous plaque and got to meet RecycleSmart‘s staff as well as some of our county commissioners. Mum brought muffins. A few of our friends, sponsors, and members came. We even got interviewed on TV! It was an awesome night.

We think we had a pretty good 2013 but we never dreamed of this. As Recycler of the Year, we join some pretty awesome company. Check out past RotY recipients:

2008 Goodwill Industries
2009 The Medicine Shoppe and The Prescription Shop
2010 All Take It Back registered businesses were recognized
2011 Michigan Green Consortium
2012 American Waste

We may be called “Carter’s Compost” but really, we are “Traverse City’s Compost”. Since the get-go in 2012, we have had nothing but amazing support from our community.

Some Thank Yous are in store:

Thank You to our neighbors for choosing to be Compost Champions. Without them taking the time to fill the buckets with their kitchen scraps, there’d be no Carter’s Compost.

Thank You to my sponsors for their financial backing helping us invest in a new bike and trailer.

Thank You to all of our Pile Sharers for helping us find space for the scraps.

Thank you to Oryana for building Traverse City’s first Community Compost Station.

Thank You to our volunteers for helping to screen the compost, wrangle worms and harvest leaves.

Thank You to our fellow Compost kids: Jack & Izzy and Max.

Thank You to the GT County Resource Recovery Council for the honor.

And Thank You, Traverse City. You’re a great town. Really. Let’s continue to Compost On! together and make bike-powered neighborhood bucket slinging the new normal in TC.

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The C’sC Community Sustained Compost Project

we compost

Neighbors helping neighbors to grow compost, reduce waste, save landfill space and green our neighborhood is an awesome way to build community!

We are partnering with like minded neighbors/organizations/businesses to help make bike-powered, youth-driven community composting the new normal in Traverse City.

Our Community Sustained Compost Project features:

Neighborhood Compost Stations,
backyard “sharing” piles,
Neighborhood Compost Fiestas,
C’sC Expansion Program where we help young people start slinging buckets in their own neighborhood
Carter’s College of Compostology: An educational program where we teach the nuts and bolts of backyard composting to our neighbors

You can also support bike-powered community composting by: bagging your shredded maple leaves,
sponsoring us and
donating your time/talents.

We’re dreaming big in 2014 to make bike-powered, youth-driven, community composting become the new normal in TC and have launched a KickStarter Project to help make it happen. We appreciate your support!

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My 4th grade Science Fair Project: A compost survey


I am researching Traverse City’s household kitchen scrap composting rate for my science fair project. I don’t think there is any current data on this. Your answers to this survey are not only important to my science project but could be useful to our local government as well.

The survey will take about 5 minutes. There are a few gardening questions as this is important to the Carter’s Compost mission of “completing the cycle” by growing neighborhood food with neighborhood compost. Expect some demographic questions too.

All answers are anonymous and you must live in Grand Traverse County to participate. Please, only one survey per household. Duplicates will be disqualified. Ends January 31.

Go to the survey here:

I want to get a lot of respondents so that my sample is large. Please share the above link with your neighbors/friends/co-workers via email/social media/website/newsletter.

Thank you for taking part in my survey.

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Max vs The Polar Vortex


Meet Max. Max is our Central Neighborhood bucket slinger. He’s been using his bike, buckets and trailer to help his neighbors compost their kitchen scraps for the past year. He is legit. And unlike us, who bailed on this winter, he is brave. Tough as nails. Max is a true Northern Michigander.

Polar Vortex? 50+ inches of snow? Icy roads? No biggie. Max is a Compost Champion and continues to get out there week after week to help his neighbors reduce their waste.

Should you ever see him out on his bucket route on Mondays, make sure to give him a High Five or an “Atta Boy!” for helping to green our TC. Some hot chocolate wouldn’t be a bad idea either!

Thanks for being so awesome and taking one for the team, Max.

We’re proud of you.

Compost On!, young man.

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2013: A Compost Year In Review

2013-06-29 15.22.18

Last January we made a list of OneHundred13 awesome things for Twenty13. As predicted, they all stayed rad. This January, we’re reflecting on the year that was here at C’sC World HQ:

* We have now helped over 100 neighbors reduce their waste.

* Added several offices to our Compost Friendly Business program. Now 12 in all.

* Stayed true to being 100% bike powered. Because it’s the awesome thing to do.

* Planted a “million” buckets in our front yard as part of the US Compost Council’s Million Tomato Campaign

* Our Community Sustained Compost Project now features 12 backyard “sharing” piles and Traverse City’s first Neighborhood Compost Station at Oryana.

* Helped 3 other TC kids start bucket slinging operations in their own neighborhoods.

* We wrote about Food Waste and Our Apple Tree and made the short list of a UNEP blogging contest and almost won a trip to Mongolia for World Environment Day.

* Neighborhood Compost Fiestas are muy FUN!

* The C’sC Mobile Compost Pile helps events go zerowaste. We helped 13 community events compost their food waste.

* Completing of the Cycle. We reduce neighborhood waste and grow neighborhood compost made from neighborhood kitchen scraps to then grow neighborhood food.

* Our 2nd annual Great Neighborhood Pumpkin Pick-upwas a roaring success.

* The C’sC College of Compostology continues to educate our neighbors about the awesomeness of backyard composting.

* “Graduated” 13 of our members to their own backyard pile.

* We started a new community based youth cycling organization called El Grupo Norte.

* People from 73 different counters visited last year

Our winter siesta is going great. We’re embracing the snow but dreaming of spring. We’re definitely fired up for 2014.

Let’s Compost On! together, TC.

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We Love Our Library

Meet our library. Every kid probably thinks their library is the best but ours really is. Not only do they use my bucket to compost their lunch scraps and coffee grounds but they also have the finest books/movies/music to check out.

They always have all sorts of special things going on too. Like the Summer Reading program, Wigglers with Ms Jill and Brown Sugar, the Saturday Sampler, TADL BATL, movies in the Big Room, and the Legorama/ChessClub/Word Bingo/Time to Draw after-school activities.

Probably the most awesome library on the planet.

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Bike-Powered Snow Plowing with NORTE! Youth Cycling

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Oh Hello, Winter!

Although we’ve just celebrated winter solstice, snow has come early and often to Northern Michigan. We’ve already had 26 inches of the beautiful white stuff this season…that’s 66cm for my Canadian friends.

Our winter bucket slinging siesta is going great! Sledding at the Civic Center, skiing at Hickory, snowshoeing at Pellizzari. We’ve also been helping out NORTE! Youth Cycling with their bike-powered sidewalk and trail plowing as part of TART’s snow removal initiative.

We’re helping to build community by clearing snow the awesome way. We’re using pedal power to make our neighborhood more accessible for walkers and cyclists. Neighbors helping neighbors. Zero emissions. Clean energy. Infinite MPG. That’s pretty awesome.

Email NORTE! at for more details.