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This week we received an enquiry from Debra about composting fruit waste in schools, and we thought a few of you might find our advice useful….

For an excellent range of well designed compost bins visit http://www.recycleworks.co.uk.

School fruit waste is suitable to put in a compost bin, and if included with other green waste and then mixed with  50% brown waste such as thin cardboard or shredded paper, it will make compost that is suitable for use in the school garden. 
 
However the general advice is it’s often not achievable to compost all of the fruit waste generated in school, due to the quantities involved. 
 
As a general guide if the school is generating large volumes of fruit waste it is better to compost only what you can and have a well balanced compost bin that is working well.  That way everyone has a positive experience of composting, the children find it a useful learning exercise and everyone involved is then more likely to begin composting at home. 
 
Some people also worry about the fruit flies associated with this type of waste, but if the lid is left off the compost bin on a windy day, they will disperse quite easily. 
 
It’s also worth bearing in mind that because fruit waste is acidic it is particularly important to balance it with the shredded cardboard and maintain a good air circulation. 
 
The soil around a compost bin can be affected by the contents of the bin.  For example, the grass may grow quicker and be greener due to the leaching out of nutrients. 
 
For more information on composting take a look at our fact sheet – How to Make Compost.

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