Food Waste Collection is Coming to Cornwall Soon!

Right now, the City collects leaves, branches, yard waste, Christmas trees, and Halloween pumpkins seasonally. 

By 2025, the City of Cornwall must also collect food waste. Our plan is to collect food waste at the curb. It will be taken to a co-digester at the wastewater treatment plant, where we'll use it to create fertilizer and generate fuel.

We are just getting started with this project. Before we can start using your food waste to create power, we need to:

  • build the necessary infrastructure at the wastewater treatment plant,
  • seek funding from government partners,
  • explore possible partnerships with organics suppliers and gas utilities,
  • explore possible partnerships with neighbouring municipalities, and
  • tell residents more about how food waste collection will work.

In the meantime, you can use a backyard or indoor composter. You can also try meal planning to reduce your food waste. We will let you know when it's time to start putting food waste in special containers at the curb for collection.

At this point, our plan would allow you to put any food waste into the green bin. That includes food scraps, egg shells, grease, bones - even napkins, paper towels, and rags that have touched food.

Stay tuned, though - plans may change depending on funding, partnerships, and council's approval.


Right now, the wastewater treatment plant already manages something called municipal sewage sludge. In the future:

  1. We will take the sludge,
  2. Mix it with your food waste, and
  3. Make fertilizer out of the end product (it's called digestate).
  4. Co-digestion (slow cooking the sludge and food waste) also creates biogas.
  5. Biogas can be turned into compressed natural gas or hydrogen gas, and then used to fuel vehicles and produce electricity or carbon negative RNG.

The City is partnering with the Ontario Clean Water Agency. This agency will help us achieve zero carbon facilities and turn our waste into energy.

Why this Matters

Keeping organics out of the landfill site will help to:

  • extend the life of the landfill.
  • recover valuable resources (yes, your food scraps are valuable!).
  • comply with the province’s Food and Organic Waste Policy Statement and Framework , which will ban food and organic waste from disposal sites by 2025.
  • be a part of a global movement to meet the United Nations Sustainability Goals.

Your Input

In 2020, we asked Cornwall residents to tell us about their waste habits. Consultants completed a waste audit of random homes in our community.

Consultants and City staff hosted a virtual coffee chat on January 7. You can watch the virtual event here:


phone icon Contact Us