Virginia's first bicycling compost service kicks off in Harrisonburg

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — Soil Cycles is Virginia's very first bicycle-powered compostable waste pickup service, and it started in Harrisonburg.

Soil Cycles has collected almost 2,000 pounds of waste.

Nidhi Vinod, the co-founder and director, said the business was started by two young entrepreneurs with a goal to make the community better.

"Knowing all the potential that compost can do, it's really hard to just let it sit in the landfill," said Vinod.

Harrisonburg stopped its curbside recycling program last spring, which is what encouraged Vinod and her co-founder Amelia Morrison to collect the compost.

"It feels really good to lead by example to show that two people can start a program that does a lot of good for a community, builds community and has a meaningful impact," said Morrison.

Although the city now has a recycle center, the young women's business is taking off. Over the last few months, the community came together to help them get bikes and a trailer to pick up waste.

"Just knowing that we have the support is very comforting in many ways," said Vinod.

Volunteers stop at businesses and residential properties; then they drop off compost at "hub" locations around the city. After that, it is picked up by Black Bear Composting.

"It feels really fulfilling, and our thighs have gotten really strong!" joked Vinod.

When a customer "subscribes," they get a bucket with a liner and are instructed on what they can and cannot compost. Then it is picked up once a week.

"Being on a bicycle is so interactive that way, which is another great aspect of using bicycles and it makes us feel like we are always building community as we do this work," said Morrison.

So far, they have collected almost 2,000 pounds of waste.

RIght now, it cost $25 per month to be a customer. For more information on Soil Cycles, check out their website.