Orkney Islands Council
Working together for a better Orkney

Organics Recycling/Composting

Composting is an inexpensive, natural process that transforms your kitchen and garden waste into a valuable and nutrient rich food for your garden. It's easy to make and use.

Image of a Johanna.

We are delighted the reduced price Green Johannas’ promoted last week (24 August) have been so popular with Orkney’s Mainland and Isles residents. The 50 units subsidised by the Council have now sold out as have the 40 provided free of charge to Isles residents by Orkney Zerowaste. We would like to thank everyone for their interest in this promotion and are delighted to have helped 90 residents create a more eco-friendly way to dispose of their green garden and food waste.

Please read on though! All residents can still purchase a reduced price Green Johanna, so please don’t lose heart. You will still stand to save £70 if you purchase a Green Johanna and winter jacket together. The Green Johanna can be purchased at £72.00 (instead of 119.99) and the jacket at £39.99 instead of £69.00.

To purchase your Green Johanna, irrespective of where you live in Orkney!, please go to the Great Green Systems Website using the link provided in the 'Related Links' section of this page.

Why compost?

Environmental reasons

Do your bit to reduce the amount of waste sent for incineration. Even for households that are already composting, new research has found that almost half of the food waste in their rubbish bins could have been composted.

Did you know, composting at home for just one year can save global warming gases equivalent to all the CO2 your kettle produces annually, or your washing machine produces in three months?

Benefits for your garden

Your compost is a nutrient-rich food product for your garden and will help improve soil structure, maintain moisture levels, and keep your soil's pH balance in check while helping to suppress plant disease. It will have everything your plants need including nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium and it will help buffer soils that are very acidic or alkaline. Compost improves your soil's condition and your plants and flowers will love it!

Financial Benefits

The average UK family is wasting nearly £60 a month by throwing away almost an entire meal a day, according to a report by WRAP that revealed the scale of the ongoing challenge to reduce household food waste.

Britons are chucking out the equivalent of 24 meals a month, adding up to 4.2 million tonnes of food and drink every year that could have been consumed. Almost half of this is going straight from fridges or cupboards into the bin. One-fifth of what households buy ends up as waste, and around 60% of that could have been eaten. Therefore by beginning to compost your food waste, you may think twice about just how much food your buying in the first place! But at least you are getting a benefit from it by composting!

Did you know, each ton of waste shipped to Shetland for incineration costs the Council approximately £150. Therefore by removing waste from your grey bin saves on the cost of disposing of your waste. This means money can be invested in other important services.