Rotters getting more people composting

This story was published 27 June 2018

Did you know that the average household in the UK produces more than a tonne of waste every year and that almost one third could be transformed into compost at home?

Man with compost bin.

If biodegradable waste is not treated correctly it rots down and creates methane, a powerful greenhouse gas.

As well as lowering the amount of methane produced and helping protect the environment, composting your own waste at home also reduces pollution from vehicles transporting it around the county.

To help tackle issues such as this and to inspire people to change their waste habits, the county council coordinates a series of talks and activities at events, shows and schools across North Yorkshire supported by a team of dedicated volunteers known as the Rotters.

Jeff Coates, volunteer coordinator for the North Yorkshire Rotters, said: “Often when we talk to people at events they realise that they’re throwing away a lot of waste that could actually be composted at home. Fruit and vegetable peelings, crushed eggshells, paper, card and garden waste are all compostable. Aside from helping the environment, composting has the added benefit of producing free top-quality compost for use as a soil improver, mulch or plant feed. The Rotters are fantastic at helping people understand why composting is so important, demonstrating how easy it is and showing people how much they can save by reducing food waste.”

For people who are passionate about environmental issues, being a Rotter is a great way to get involved with their community by raising awareness of the importance of home composting, promoting the Love Food Hate Waste campaign and encouraging people to reduce, reuse and recycle.

For younger people, being a Rotter is a good way to gain valuable skills and experience. Rotters are not committed to give a specific number of hours each month and can choose which events they are able to attend. Many members of the team volunteer elsewhere and a third combine being a Rotter with paid employment.

Rotters are provided with a volunteer polo shirt and training as well as ongoing support from a dedicated volunteer coordinator. People who are interested in joining the Rotters can fill in their details online here, call 01609 797212 or send an email to

Find out how to order a compost bin and get more information about composting here.