Organics management for local governments

Many local governments in Washington are required to:
•    Provide organics collection services to non-residential customers.
•    Provide organics collection services to all single-family residential customers.
•    Have a compost procurement ordinance.
•    Submit a compost procurement report.

Requirements for local jurisdictions

Washington’s organics management laws have three sections that apply to every jurisdiction in the state:

  • Compost Procurement Ordinance (CPO) and Report: A plan to purchase and use local compost in public projects with an annual report of results.
  • Business Organics Management: Businesses that create certain amounts of organic waste must sign-up for collection service. Nearly all businesses will be required to subscribe to service by 2026.
  • Residential Collection Requirements: Local governments must provide organic collection service to all single-family residents by April 30, 2030.

The Organics Management Local Government Requirements Workbook has a page for every county and all its incorporated cities and towns. Each worksheet outlines specific aspects of the law where compliance in the jurisdiction is required.

Residential collection service

By April 1, 2027, local governments must provide year-round organic collection service.

Service must be: 
•    Source-separated, so food and yard waste are not mixed with garbage or recycling.
•    Provided to all single-family residents. 
•    Provided to non-residential and business customers that generate more than .25 cubic yards of organic waste per week. This does not include multifamily units.

A map of residential collection areas will be available by July 1, 2024.  

By April 1, 2030, local governments must provide organics collection service to all residential customers on a non-elective basis. The collection service must accept food waste and collect organic waste separately from garbage and recycling.

We will send updates on residential organics collection requirements ahead of the April 1 deadlines. 

Sign up for Organics Management updates:
1.    Enter your email address.
2.    Navigate to "Solid Waste Management Program.”
3.    Select “Organics Management.”

Year-round collection exemption

A local government does not have to provide year-round service, if:
•    They were already providing organics collection as of Jan. 1, 2024, and
•    Their service is provided at least 26 weeks of the year.


Exempt residential collection service that services individual households

A resident may be exempt from organics collection service if they manage organic material waste on-site or self-haul to an organics management facility. We will develop guidance for these exemptions by Jan.1, 2027 to support local governments development of exemption guidelines for their service areas.

Exempt cities and counties

Local governments do not have to provide curbside organics collection service if:

•    Their population is less than 25,000 residents, or
•    Their jurisdiction disposes less than 5,000 tons of solid waste.


We may grant five-year, renewable waivers for a city or county that is required to provide service by law but is unable to comply. We may grant a waiver when one or more of the following is true:

•    Compliance is economically not possible when considering additional overhead, such as transportation costs to reach the nearest facility with capacity.
•    There is limited capacity at accessible or nearby organic management facilities.
•    Restrictions bar the transport of organic materials, such as for apple maggots.

We may adopt rules to clarify this waiver process.