Free composting webinar planned for Friday

  • Mandy Sweet-Antes, of Northfield, dumps her compost bin into the food waste dumpster at the Northfield Transfer Station in 2017. The Greater Quabbin Food Alliance is holding a composting webinar on Friday. Staff File Photo/Paul Franz

Staff Report
Published: 5/27/2020 1:38:38 PM

ATHOL — Interested in composting, but not sure where to start?

A local food waste reduction group is offering a free webinar this week on the subject of home composting, or the process of turning food waste into organic material that can be added to soil to help plants grow.

The Greater Quabbin Food Alliance’s Food Waste Reduction and Composting Working Group is coordinating the webinar from noon to 1 p.m. on Friday, “International Learn About Composting Day.” According to a press release from the alliance, the webinar will feature local composting experts who will provide tips, how-to’s, and local resources to start or improve your own composting system in Central and Western Massachusetts.

Registration for the webinar, “How to Start and Improve Your Home Compost,” is required in advance at After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

The webinar follows three waste reduction and composting workshops held by the Greater Quabbin Food Alliance for businesses in 2019, the press release states.

Composting allows residents to reduce household and municipal trash expenses by composting food waste rather than putting it in the trash. According to the release, adding compost to your garden soils adds nutrients and minerals, improves water retention and soil structure, and adds beneficial microorganisms. Reducing the amount of food and paper placed in the trash can also reduce climate-changing gases in the atmosphere.

Experts speaking at the webinar will include Amy Donovan from the Franklin County Solid Waste Management District; Joel Betts from the Worcester County Conservation District; and Rick Innes, owner and operator of Clear View Composting.

According to the release, Friday’s webinar is being organized with the help of current Food Waste Reduction and Composting Working Group members Rocio Lalanda of the Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust, Susan Campbell of Drawdown Montague, Chris Von Achen of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Khrysti Smyth Barry, customer solutions specialist for RecyclingWorks at the Center for EcoTechnology.

For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page at or the website for Mount Grace at


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