Compostable means that a product can break down into carbon dioxide, water, inorganic compounds and biomass in about 90 – 180 days or less with the support of aerobic microorganisms, and that the process leaves no toxicity in the soil (for more information, refer to “composting” in our Key Terms).
Compostable products can include food scraps, paper, leaves, as well as certified-compostable foodservice packaging materials like Better Earth. The speed of degradability will vary based on the composition of the product.
Pro tip: labels can be misleading. When purchasing compostable products, always look for the words “certified compostable,” “OK Compost,” “BPI-certified,” or “meets ASTM-D6400 standard.”