Resident Food Scrap Drop-Off Program

Collect your kitchen food scraps for composting, instead of adding them to your trash or putting them down your garbage disposal.

The Resident Recycling Committee and the Resident Advisory Council are working with General Services to support a three-month pilot program at Riderwood.  For the December 4, 2023, Riderwood TV General Services Updates, Sheena Lewis discussed the program with residents Linda Wanner, Anne Riley, and Rae Burns.

Since the start of the program on October 19th, 2023, we have collected over 65 large green bins of food scraps (3+ tons), and for the week of November 30th, there were a total of 361 resident households participating.  To see the full report for the pilot program to date, click here.

Resident Guidelines

If you would like to participate in this voluntary program, your food scraps can be dropped off in each of the four neighborhoods every Thursday between 9:00 and 11:00 AM.  Green bins will be conveniently located for each drop-off, with a resident monitor to assist and answer any questions. If you can’t drop them off yourself during the allotted time slot, please find a friend or neighbor who can drop them off for you!

Here’s what you need to know to participate in the Food Scrap Drop-off Program.  Click the image to see a full screen version you can print out.

Acceptable/Unacceptable Lists

Be sure to include only the acceptable items identified below, otherwise your bag will have to go into the trash, and not be part of the food scrap program.  Click the image to see a full screen version you can print out.

Questions and Answers

Residents who participated during the summer months had some comments about What Works for them and What Didn’t Work for them.

For answers to your questions, check out our Frequently Asked Questions.   If that doesn’t answer your question, then just send an email to

The Reporter article from November 6, 2023, has some ideas on how best to store your food scraps during the week; and the article from December 4, 2023, describes what happens to our food scraps after we drop them off!

Maryland is Composting

Recently, Maryland passed a law mandating recycling of food scraps for restaurants and other businesses, and our local counties are moving even further, with curb-side pickup of food scrap waste for residents (see the PGC Composts initiative and the Montgomery Pilot Program).  While our Resident Food Scrap Drop-off Program is somewhat different, the benefits are the same:

Reduces landfill methane emissions
Reduces pollution from incinerators
Produces garden-ready compost
Supports sustainable agriculture
Supports local businesses

Food Scraps at Riderwood

Riderwood has been recycling food scraps from the dining kitchens for a number of years, as described in a Montgomery County case study. This program handled kitchen scraps from our residential dining rooms, but did not include food scraps from our individual resident apartments. But now, food scraps collected as part of this 3-month pilot program will be added to the kitchen food scraps and picked up by Compost Crew, the contractor who handles Riderwood’s food scraps.  Our food scraps are taken to the Prince George’s County Organics Composting Facility.