In 1994, Minnesota banned yard trimmings from landfills. Since this time in Hennepin County, pubic compost facilities accepted yard waste for drop off by residents; curbside yard waste pickup is available for an additional charge.
With successful yard waste compost programs in place, Wayzata began a pilot program to determine the feasibility of a source-separated organics collection service in 2003. In the pilot, residents were given a separate curbside cart, a kitchen bin, and compostable bags. Within the pilot program the city saw a 70% participation rate by citizens and an 8% diversion of organic materials.
The split-truck they used to pick up trash and compost in the pilot program was ultimately determined not to be cost effective. This led to the Blue Bags Organic Compost System, where food waste was collected in a compostable blue bag and placed in the garbage bin. The Blue Bags Organic Compost System has been offered to citizens since 2013. Wayzata, Maple Plain, Loretto, and Medina all adopted this system.
Residents place all compostable food scraps and soiled paper in a blue bag. The blue bag is thrown in the garbage cart and picked up weekly. Residents can also elect for every other week trash and compost service. The blue bags are separated from the trash at the waste facility.
Compostable blue bag items include:
Participation in the Blue Bag program costs residents $5 a month. Residents who elect to participate will receive sixty 32-gallon compostable bags, a 32-gallon bin, complimentary bag of compost, and ventilated kitchen compost bucket.
Yard waste will be picked up as an additional service for $78 a season. If residents elect not to have the additional service, all yard waste must be taken to the public compost facility.