Compostable Bags Required For Yard Waste Collection Beginning 2010

Beginning January 1, 2010, a new state law will require residents in
Hopkins who bag their yard waste to put the yard waste out for pickup in
compostable bags—either paper bags or compostable plastic bags. The new state law will affect residents in the metro counties.

Why the new law?

Using paper and compostable plastic bags rather than traditional black plastic bags will greatly reduce the amount of plastic being sent to local composting facilities. Because local composters will have less plastic to screen out of their finished compost, processing costs will be reduced and the quality of the finished compost will be enhanced.

Where can I get the new bags?

Most home improvement, grocery, and hardware stores now carry them. (If you don’t see them at your local store, ask an employee; many store
owners are just learning of this requirement also and may appreciate the customer request.)

Compostable plastic bags should clearly state that they meet ASTM D6400 standards for composting and that they are “compostable.” Bags marked “biodegradable” or “degradable” do not meet the state law. The shelf life of compostable bags is approximately 1 to 3 years. Make sure
to review the label for the product specific shelf life and purchase accordingly.

Can I still use non-compostable plastic bags for yard waste?

Beginning in 2010, Hopkins yard waste pick-up service will no longer take the non-compostable plastic bags. You may still transport your yard waste in plastic bags to the drop off site, but you must dump the material
out of the bag and take the bag with you.

How can I find out more?

See the Compostable Bags FAQ from Rethink Recycling.


  • Solid Waste Coordinator