Few would dispute that the concept of composting green waste to create soil improvers, growing media etc. is a good thing.
However, the experience of utilising such products is not necessarily so good.
Contamination of the compost, particularly with plastics, but also things like hypodermic needles, engine parts, oil filters, mdf of unknown composition, rat carcases, etc. can make it off-putting to use.
Contamination by things not so easily seen can be just as bad, if not so quickly apparent. Weed seed burdens continue to be at unacceptably high levels, even in many PAS100 certified green waste composts. There also remain continuing reports of herbicide residues causing problems – particularly, but not exclusively, aminopyralids.
A new and unlikely champion of quality control and improvement in green waste composting has entered the arena: the National Council for Metal Detecting (NCMD). Apparently the amount of metal residue in the waste is causing them problems and concerns…
It is probably good to have input from such an unlikely perspective. Anything that helps to improve the quality and safety of composted green waste has got to be a good thing.