Government of New Brunswick

Collect your kitchen scraps into a covered pail as they come along. Every few days, when the pail fills up, just toss the contents onto the compost and cover each addition with a little more "brown" stuff to control odours. Add a few handfuls of topsoil if you can get it, or compost from an earlier batch, and keep all the materials as moist as a wrung-out sponge.

Harvesting the compost is easiest with two cans on the go. Once the first can is filled, just stir it every few days and keep it moist. New kitchen scraps go into the second can. By the time it is full, the first batch should be ready for use.


Even without the space to hide large containers, or the physical ability to stir the contents, you can still compost anaerobically (without oxygen). Composting this way takes six months or a year, but it requires very little effort, just some storage space.

Collect kitchen scraps in a covered pail and sprinkle sawdust or crumbled peatmoss over each addition to it. Or store food wastes (clearly labelled) in the fridge or freezer. When the pail is full, empty it into a sturdy plastic bag without holes and add just enough water to moisten it thoroughly.

Half-fill each bag and seal it very tightly. To be on the safe side, you may want to put it inside a second bag. Don't be tempted to peek until it's had time to finish composting: decomposer organisms working without air produce an awful smell!

Store the bags out of your way, on a balcony when the weather is warm, or in a storage closet. The compost is ready to use when you open a bag and it doesn't smell of decomposition once the air from inside has dispersed.

Composting Indoors

No backyard or garden? Collect your kitchen waste in the freezer or a covered pail to give to a composting friend. Or make your own compost indoors!

Holding Units

With a basement, garage, porch or balcony, you have plenty of space for a cold composting container.

Try a large metal or plastic garbage can with a lid. Punch nail holes in the sides and top, and stir with a broom handle or use an aerator stack to get oxygen into the compost. Start your compost with a "brown" layer: approximately 8 cm (3 inches) of peat moss, sawdust, or shredded leaves from someone else's fall clean-up.