The East Side Compost Pedallers

Saving the Planet… One Bucket at a Time!

Alright, I know I write about a lot of cool people and businesses, but so far none of them have been able to say they are saving the planet like the East Side Compost Pedallers. This organization deserves some sort of fancy earth-shaped trophy to honor their efforts! Their work stretches into nearly every environmental issue – from global warming to sustainable agriculture to landfill reduction and beyond!

Did you know that 30% of all “trash” we throw out isn’t really trash at all!

So… what is it, you ask?

It’s compostable material!

So what is compost, you ask?

Essentially, it’s decayed organic material – clean and rich in nutrients – that is used for fertilizer.

Sounds serious, right? Well, not really. Throw some food scraps, grass clippings, and a brown paper bag together… then just add water and WHAMBAM! You just successfully started your first compost pile! Of course, to get the best compost, it requires a bit more finesse, attention to detail, and dedication to keeping up with the pile. That’s where The East Side Compost Pedallers come in!

The Compost Pedallers are a bike-powered compost recycling service. They’ll collect your scraps each week and pedal them to nearby farms and gardens. All you have to do is throw your extra food into a bucket (rather than the trash) and then put your bucket outside your door once a week.

There are such huge benefits for such little effort! They are taking a problem and almost effortlessly transforming that problem into a beneficial material solution. Compost reduces costs at farms by reducing the need for extra pesticides. It keeps our food clean and free of chemical additives. And, finally, it keeps organic material out of landfills, where it would eventually be released as methane (a greenhouse gas 50x more potent than carbon dioxide!).

I had the pleasure of sitting down with Austin Compost Pedallers Director of Membership, Christina Bradt. If you’ve ever thrown anything away at our HOPE Farmer’s Market, you’ve probably met Christina! After graduating with an environmental science degree and moving to Austin, she started with the organization as an intern. She still fondly remembers her first collection in December of 2012.

Check out these stats. You can see what a difference this small company has made in less than 2 years! Today, these pedallers are composting 2 TONS every single week!

Christina admits that she has turned into somewhat of a compost nerd. She and her fellow pedaller and boyfriend Paul have been known to take plastic ware to restaurants to take their food scraps home.

So, maybe you don’t need to go that far, but if you would like to start composting (and start saving the planet!) or just want to stay up to date on local sustainability initiatives, check out The East Side Compost Pedallers’ links below. Also, give them a high five for their great work the next time you’re at the HOPE Farmers Market! They sort ALL of the discarded Market materials into bins containing either compost, recycling, or items to be sent to the landfill. They’ll also be happy to answer ANY questions you have about sorting your own trash or building your own compost pile! HOPE loves the Compost Pedallers!

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P.S The Pedallers work with corporate groups, too! Going green has never been easier. Check it out!

 

Hello!

I’m Brooke, the author of the blog you’ve just read. Working with the HOPE Farmer’s Market has been so great, but unfortunately I will have to leave HOPE to finish my last semester at Baylor University this fall. I will graduate with a major in political science and a minor in poverty studies and social justice. When I’m not blogging, my days are full of studying for the GRE and applications. I know I’m super exciting this summer, right? But every blog, I’ll let you guys know something a bit more interesting about myself and this week’s fact is:

One of my favorite books is “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien.

 

HOPE Likes Bikes, yes we do!

Over the years, we have had all sorts of bicycle-friendly programming at the HOPE Farmers Market. Occasional DIY workshops offered by local bike shops developed into our own in-house HOPE Likes Bikes program. Intended to raise cycling awareness, encourage all to bike more often, and empower Austinites to take bicycle maintenance into their own hands, HOPE Likes Bikes launched as a weekly community bike shop at the Market.

In recent months, we’re excited to have developed partnerships with great local bike-friendly organizations and businesses, including Bike Austin and the East Side Compost Pedallers. In addition, we’re expanding our own bike programming to include a bicycle-powered PopUP Mobile Farm Stand. So now, HOPE Likes Bikes will serve as a vehicle to promote ALL of our bicycle-friendly partners and projects and well as to raise cycling awareness through the Market and around East Austin. Keep up with HLB on Facebook or swing by the East End of the market to park your bike and talk to the experts!

 

HOPE Likes Bikes Partners and Projects…

HOPE PopUP Mobile Farm Stand
The HOPE Farm Stand is going mobile! We have big plans to expand our community outreach initiatives in 2013 including this project – designed to take local produce out into East Austin and increase accessibility to healthy food. We’re currently in the process of designing a bicycle-powered mobile farm cart in collaboration with the AIA Design Voice.

Keep up with the design progress here >>

Bike Austin
Bike Austin (formerly LOBV) is a nonprofit advocacy organization promoting better transportation policy decisions, justice for bicyclists, and more resources to increase the number of bicyclists in the Austin area. Now partnering with the HOPE FM, Bike Austin has taken over our community bike shop at the Market. They have the tools and know how to help you learn to fix your own bike and safely bike around town!

East Side Compost Pedallers
The Pedallers offer an intensely local, completely bike-powered compost collection program dedicated to enriching the Austin community. They collect compostables from homes & businesses and give them directly to urban farmers to help grow more local food. Right now, the Pedallers pedal our market compost directly to Springdale Farm every Sunday!

 

Get Involved: This Saturday is our first HOPE Likes Bikes Happy Hour at the Market! 

Join HOPE FM and the East Side Compost Pedallers for our first HOPE Likes Bikes Happy Hour – immediately following Edible Austin’s Urban Farm Bicycle Tour on Saturday, December 1. Enjoy a beer & live music and learn more about how much HOPE really does Like Bikes!

HOPE PopUP Mobile Farm Stand: We’ll be announcing the AIA Design Voice design charrette winner and talking more about how this project will be moving forward in coming months.

$10 buys you a HOPE pint glass and free Hops & Grain refills! Live music by Navasota String Band at 3pm!

HOPE Likes Bikes Happy Hour
Saturday, Dec 1. 3-5pm
Pine Street Station: 414 Waller St.

This is a FREE and family friendly event!

Compost By Bike

Finally, we found a better way to make the best of our market compost! HOPEFM is teaming up with the East Side Compost Pedallers, who collect compost at the Market and deliver it directly to East Austin farms this fall (including the HOPE Community Farm!). Market-goers are invited to stop by the Pedallers’ station to learn more about this great program.

More about East Side Compost Pedallers
“The Pedallers offer an intensely local, completely bike-powered compost collection program dedicated to enriching the Austin community. We collect compostables from homes & businesses and give them directly to urban farmers to help grow more local food.

The Compost Pedallers offer an authentically sustainable and delightfully original compost recycling program. Sure, we’re here to help you save your compostables from ending up in the landfill, but we refuse to stop there. All of the organic material our pedallers collect goes straight to the closest urban farm or gardening project to be composted so that they can be used to grow more healthy, local food. Then, we complete the natural cycle by taking that food right back to the comunity– delivering it to farmers’ markets, to restaurants, and even directly to your front porch!”