Composting has ended at the Green Market

I wondered where the bins were last Saturday and then V. sent word: composting at the Saturday Green Market at Washington Market Park has ended permanently as of May 18. The Green Market composting program was eliminated by the mayor in November, part of budget cuts to the Department of Sanitation; 198 out of 266 food-scrap drop-off community sites went with it.

The city has already started requiring composting in Brooklyn and Queens, and Manhattan will start on Oct. 6, 2024. In the meantime, the city has two kinds of drop-off sites: the “Smart Composting Bins” controlled by an app (the orange pins above) and “Food Scrap Drop-Off Sites” largely inside parks (green pins).

NB: the green drop off sites cannot accept meat, bones or dairy.

You have to get the “NYC Compost” app to find and use the Smart Composting Bins — the locations are here on the DOS’ drop-off composting site list. Here’s the list:
> Chambers and Greenwich, northwest corner
> Chambers and West, northwest corner
> Harrison and Greenwich, southwest corner
> Franklin and Varick, southeast corner
> Broadway and Park Place, on the east side of Broadway

I still don’t love the opening on these — if you have a compost bin, you have to somehow shovel the scraps in what is a shallow opening like a mailbox, and often it drips on your shoes! But that’s the best we have until curbside pickup starts again.

What to compost in the Smart Composting Bins:
ALL food scraps, plant waste, and food-soiled paper. This includes meat, bones, dairy, prepared foods, and greasy uncoated paper plates and pizza boxes.

What to compost in the Food Scrap Drop-Off Sites:
MOST food scraps, including fruits and vegetables, eggshells, coffee grounds and tea bags, bread, rice, and pasta. Plant waste, including leaf and yard waste and houseplants. No meat, bones or dairy.

What not to compost:
No trash such as diapers, personal hygiene products, animal waste, wrappers, non-paper packaging, and foam products.



  1. Freeze your food scraps! Then they don’t drizzle on your shoes or elsewhere.

  2. I second that! Even better, freeze in compostable bags and it’s easy to transfer mess-free.

  3. It’s too bad that the city felt composting at the green market wasn’t necessary. I do like the smart Bins, but they aren’t as selective with what they compost (they’ll take meat, bones and dairy) and I don’t believe they necessarily replenish local soils, but I could be wrong.