Food Waste Diversion (FWD)

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Welcome to FWD thinking! 

The City of Ames is offering FWD, a Food Waste Diversion program to help keep food waste out of the landfill. Not everyone has the space, time, or know-how to compost food, but many residents want an alternative to putting organic waste in the trash and burying it in a landfill. FWD offers that alternative!


The FWD program allows participants to purchase an FWD starter or basic kit to use for organic waste collection. When your bucket or bag is full, dispose of your organic waste at Resource Recovery at no charge. That's FWD thinking! 

FWD Disposal Site (no charge)

Resource Recovery Plant (year-round, 24/7)
110 Center Ave. (disposal on the north side at 440 E. 2nd Street, Lane 1)

Fee Structure

FWD Starter Pack ($10): 4-gallon bucket and lid, five compostable bags, and information on the program.

Where Can I Purchase FWD Packs?

There are two places to purchase the FWD Pack:

Resource Recovery Plant (year-round)
110 Center Ave.
Mon - Fri (7am to 3:30pm)
Sat (8am to noon

City Hall Community Center (year-round)
515 Clark Ave.
Mon - Fri (5am - 9pm)
Sat (8am - 2pm)
Sun (2 - 8pm) 


Help us spread FWD thinking throughout Story County, and decrease the amount of organic waste sent to the landfill.

This program may be modified based on customer input, participation, and demand. Get involved and be part of the FWD solution!

Why is Food Waste Diversion Important?

“Reducing the amount of organics we throw away is important. A tremendous amount of natural resources and energy are used to grow, process, package, and transport food,” explains Bill Schmitt, Resource Recovery Plant Superintendent. "Food waste that goes to landfills generates methane, a harmful greenhouse gas."

Ames has a very unique and forward-thinking system of turning trash into energy. The Resource Recovery Plant, 110 Center Ave., was the first municipally owned and operated waste-to-energy system in the nation in 1975. Garbage from most of Story County is taken to the Resource Recovery Plant for processing into refuse derived fuel (RDF) and sent to the Ames Power Plant.  

For more information about FWD, the Food Waste Diversion program:

Contact the Resource Recovery Plant at 515.239.5137.