Solid Waste & Recycling

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New Compost Standard Advanced at Workshop Series

In January The Composting Council of Canada held a series workshops across Canada entitled "Compost Matters!" that were of interest to all those interested in organics recovery, composting and compost...


In January The Composting Council of Canada held a series workshops across Canada entitled “Compost Matters!” that were of interest to all those interested in organics recovery, composting and compost usage.

Agenda items included a review of the proposed adjustments to the BNQ National Compost Standard, an overview of the Compost Category Product Marketing Initiative as well as updates on regulatory developments, diversion and market development programs.

The first standard was produced about seven years ago by the Bureau de Normalisation du Quebec (BNQ) — part of the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). Federal and provincial governments as well as compost producers and end-users participated (with public consultation) in the development of this compost standard. The standard is voluntary but is tied to CCME and CFIA documents. A process to revise the standard was initiated in 2002 and participation included many industry stakeholders.

The new draft standard, issued January 20, 2004, presents enhancements and changes. Some key changes include an increase in some maximum trace element content of compost for Type A and AA (e.g., Copper 100 mg/kg DW to 400 mg/kg DW; Zinc 500 mg/kg DW to 700 mg/kg DW). Ancillary document — “Impacts of modifying the copper limit of the Canadian Compost Standard” — was written to explain potential impacts from increasing copper content.

Ancillary documents on specific measurement methods (Oxygen uptake-respirometric method; Determination of Foreign Matter Content–Sieving Method) have also been developed and represent changes from the previous standard. Specific analytical methods are presented for the various parameters (e.g., trace element content) in this draft standard. The comment period ends March 16, 2004.

“The BNQ Standard has a direct impact on the future-forward development of the composting industry in Canada.” said Susan Antler, Executive Director of The Composting Council of Canada. “It’s up to everyone involved in organics recovery, composting and compost usage to review the proposed revisions and provide their input.”

The Composting Council of Canada is developing a position paper on this draft standard. For more details, contact Danielle Buklis at The Composting Council of Canada, 416-535-0240 or email ccc@compost.org


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