Commercial Organic Separation

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Commercial and Multi-Unit (5+ units) Organic Waste Separation

Organic waste in a landfill creates pollution and potent greenhouse gases. Separating your organics is one of the best ways to address climate change, protect our environment, reduce the cost on our landfill, and get us closer to 50% diversion. Whether you are looking for home or business organic diversion, the City of Whitehorse has a collection program for you.

Organics make up a staggering 23% of what goes into our landfill, making it a top priority for the City.

20161128_COW_steaming compost 

organic waste

In 2019, it became required for all Commercial Food Producers (restaurants, grocery stores, food distributors, commercial kitchens) to separate their organic waste for collection. In 2020, Multi-Unit Residential Properties (5+ units) like condos and apartments, will be required to have organic waste collection at their site. Implementation will be staged through a zonal implementation approach. 

Zone 1: January 2019
Zone 2: March 2019
Zone 3: June 2019

fs implementation-01

The City has two separate organics collection programs:

Residential Organics is for properties with 1-4 residential units (e.g. single-family homes). It includes bi-weekly curbside collection of green carts, alternating with black carts for garbage. Click here for more info.

Commercial Organics is for properties with five or more residential units, food-service businesses, and all other commercial enterprises. It includes weekly collection of both green carts and green bins. Property owners arrange for private hauling of garbage, cardboard, recyling and other waste categories. For more info, see Multi-Unit or Business Waste.

The City has been offering a voluntary Commercial Organics Collection Pilot program since 2014. This program has been strongly supported by volunteer users reaching capacity on the small volume (cart) program, deeming the program a success.

Information and Application


How Much Will it Cost?

Green Carts (small volume):
Green Bin(large volume):
  • $25.00/ month for 1st green cart
  • $20.00/month for each additional cart
  • $160.00/ month for one 3-yard dumpster
  • $150.00/ month for one 2-yard dumpster
  • $35.00/ month for 1st green cart
  • $30.00/month for each additional cart
  • $250.00/ month for one 3-yard dumpster
  • $280.00/ month for one 2-yard dumpster 
  *All options collected weekly
*Fees subject to change

Collection containers (carts and dumpsters) are on loan free of charge from the City for the duration of the program. Containers will remain the property of the City of Whitehorse.

Exemption: Approval and Application Process

Organizations with private organic waste collection service or using another means of organic waste diversion can apply for exemption from the City's commercial organic collection during program roll-out. Exemptions must demonstrate that all Waste Management Bylaw Schedule B organic waste is being diverted through the existing system. Approved exemptions will need to be renewed annually. 

If you are managing your Schedule B organic waste items through a private collection or other means please fill out this form:

Exemption Application

Applications will be reviewed by the Designated Officer and may be followed up with a site inspection. 

Managing Organic Waste Indoors

All participating businesses, organizations and multi-unit buildings who were voluntary participants, are responsible for providing their own indoor compost collection buckets and compostable bags (handy, but not required for the program). Buildings owners are responsible for providing bins in common areas, such as shared office bathrooms and kitchens.

In the case of all participants to the Multi-Unit Organics signed up for the 2020 mandatory roll-out, buildings will be supplied with a handy kitchen catcher for each residential unit. 

What can go in your organics collection?

The City of Whitehorse compost facility accepts all food and yard waste free of plastic packaging, food soiled cardboard (like pizza boxes), paper towel, and newspaper used as compost bin liners. Meat and bones are welcome. Still not sure? Try the waste app.

Or check out our new Organics Sorting Guide.

Organics Guide 8.5x11 FINAL


If you choose to use bags, only buy compostable bags with either of these labels:

US composting council bag label Compost bag label

Do not use "biodegradeable" bags without the above logos, plastic bags or grocery bags for your organic waste  - they turn into tiny pieces of plastic and will never decompose.

CLick here if you are Looking to purchase COMPOST

 Waste Sorting App

Sorting your waste is easy with our What Goes Where app. Type the name of an item into the search bar and we will give you recycling, composting, or disposal options.

Follow these easy instructions to download the app to your phone or mobile device. 

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