Win-Win, Thanks to a Bin

Binny!How do you get people to participate in curbside food recycling? Flyers, education campaigns and information kits are nice, but maybe a cool character is better. 

Newmarket, a town of 80,000 a half-hour north of Toronto, did just that with Binny. This amiable rolling food waste bin is certainly doing the trick. Despite only starting in September, Newmarket has already surpassed their goal of diverting 65 percent of all waste from the landfill. Crystal Moss, the town’s manager of communications, thinks their whopping 78 percent diversion rate is Canada’s highest.

An impressive 80 percent of residents participate in the program, separating food waste from their regular trash. The initiative will save the town money, as they’ve switched from weekly garbage pickups to every other week. Thanks in large part to our green friend.

The town sent out postcards of Binny this summer that said ‘I’m coming to stay with you in September.’ Recently Moss heard a story about a 2-year-old boy who showed the waste collector how much he liked Binny. “You’ve got a two year old hugging a garbage container with smelly food saying it’s his friend—that’s’ pretty good,” Moss said.

Heck, I’d love to see Binny or one of his food composting friends comes to my town. I wonder if he does weddings and bar mitzvahs. I hear there’s plenty of food waste there. 

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