Sept. 13, 2022
“The Baltimore Compost Collective at Filbert Street Community Garden in Curtis Bay is a youth-led composting initiative that composts food scraps and garden waste, returns compost to local soils, and creates jobs for local youth.”
August 18, 2022
“The Baltimore Compost Collective under Marvin’s leadership is a true community labor of love. Composting happens here, an animal sanctuary happens here, youth leadership development happens here and a community comes together in the heart of Baltimore to work toward a cleaner environment for themselves and all of Baltimore.”
A Compost & Environmental Justice Poem by Marvin Hayes, Presented at South By Southwest Conference SXSW, Austin Texas 2022
Natural Resources Defense Council: City and Community Leaders Chat Food and Climate at SXSW
Marvin Hayes spoke at South By Southwest Marvin kicked off the panel with a powerful spoken word poem about the importance of composting in the midst of the environmental injustice of the polluting incinerators. He emphasized the importance of engaging youth to take action on environmental racism in his community of South Baltimore, and describing that the goal of the Baltimore Compost Collective is to “starve the incinerator and feed the soil.”
Check out The Austin Chronicle’s early coverage of South by Southwest, where Marvin Hayes is a panelist on “City Food Waste: A Burgeoning Climate Solution.”
“‘Eighty-five percent of Baltimore city trash can be composted, recycled, or reused,” [Marvin Hayes] said. ‘You’ve gotta learn so you don’t burn.'”
“The pandemic years have been disruptive throughout the waste and recycling sector, especially for smaller operators. Learn how organics recyclers in two major U.S. cities have approached this challenge while remaining vocal advocates for change in their communities.”
“Americans are wasting about $408bn in food every year, but the biggest consequence of food waste is not financial. Pollution from methane gas generated at landfills accounts for about 8 to 10 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Today, we explore food waste — how to avoid it, and what steps local and national governments in the United States are taking to solve the problem.”
December 8-9, 2021
“BCC anticipates that the success of the Baltimore Compost Collective as a model for community-oriented composting operation that will lead the City to invest in a distributed composting infrastructure that builds community and equity.”
Inside Climate News: A Bridge to Composting and Clean Air in South Baltimore
November 12, 2021
“At the Filbert Street Community Garden, Marvin Hayes helps teenagers produce ‘black gold’ and embrace farms and green spaces… But the collective, the city and all of those involved in this effort have their work cut out for them: A recent report found that only 0.7 percent of city waste is composted, while 7.6 percent is recycled and 91.7 percent is landfilled or incinerated… ‘The wind doesn’t segregate or discriminate, so we’re all breathing in bad air,’ Hayes said.”
Streamed live on Oct 21, 2021
October 12, 2021
“Marvin Hayes, of the Baltimore Compost Collective, gives us a how-to on backyard composting, including making sure your mixture is moist. Check out youth entrepreneur @kenny.captures on Instagram.”
July 20, 2021
“Hayes says that he hopes city officials make future considerations to keep collection and processing local and provide economic development opportunities for communities in Baltimore hit hardest by the environmental impacts of landfill and incineration.
Hayes pointed to his Baltimore Compost Collective as a small-scale enterprise that hires locally, pays living wages and provides opportunities for area youth.
‘We want to starve the incinerator, and feed the soul and feed the community,”’ he said.”
April 22, 2021
Marvin Hayes joins Baltimore’s First Annual Zero Waste Day which unites Labor and the Environment to create Healthy Communities, Work with Dignity, and a Planet that survives!
April 12, 2021
Residents in South Baltimore are fighting to ‘starve’ their nearby Bresco incinerator due to health concerns over the amount of pollution it creates. Read more.
March 23, 2021
Every Sunday morning, Federal Hill residents drop off their compost with Marvin Hayes and he brings it to the Filbert Street Garden, also known as the Wakanda of South Baltimore. Read more.
Travels as a Tourist in My Hometown of Baltimore – Visiting Baltimore Compost Collective at the Filbert St. Garden
March 10, 2021
“I don’t know anybody who has “visit a composting site” on their travel wish list, but this place is wholly different — and entirely worth it.” Read more.
“In collaboration with the Baltimore Office of Sustainability and its Food Matters Project, ILSR partnered with ECO City Farms and ECO’s compost guru, Benny Erez, to adapt and build his two rotating screener (aka trommel screener) designs. One design is people-powered with a simple hand crank. The other has a motor. Both designs rely on repurposed bicycle wheel rims.”
CBS Baltimore covers the demonstrations against BRESCO Trash Incinerator. Read more.
Community composting initiatives in Baltimore are highlighted in a new video released by NRDC, featuring Baltimore Compost Collective. Read more.
“Also located at the garden is the Baltimore Compost Collective, whose manager, Marvin Hayes, has this warning for the Ed-snatchers: ‘Bring back the goat or you will be composted!'” Read more.
April 30, 2020
NRDC featured the Baltimore Compost Collective in their video on food waste in Baltimore. Watch the full video below!
April 29, 2020
“Five years after Freddie Gray’s murder and the Uprising that followed, Baltimore remains as divided an unequal as ever. How—especially in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis, are grassroots organizers working to build power, fight back, and create solutions?” Watch livestream recording here.
March 27, 2020
Filbert Street Garden was included in The Daily Record 2020 list of coolest spaces! “Maryland is home to hundreds of cool spaces, from breathtaking architecture to cutting-edge design to repurposed buildings being used in new and different ways…Editors selected 30 of the coolest spaces based on each space’s appearance and function.” See full list here.
March 26, 2020
“As forcefully as Hayes lauds composting, he denounces trash incineration. Both of Baltimore’s incinerators are in Curtis Bay, which has some of the highest asthma rates and worst health outcomes in the city.” Read more.
March 12, 2020
“Marvin Hayes works in one of the most toxic neighborhoods in Baltimore city…For the last three years, [he] has been working to reverse those statistics — empowering youth along the way.” Read more.
“When Kenneth Moss was 6 years old, he grew his first tomato at the Filbert Street Community Garden. Now, a decade later, the Benjamin Franklin High student gives back to the soil with the Baltimore Compost Collective.” Read more.
January 2, 2020
“Neighborhood food pantries in Park Heights allow families to take what they need. A composting effort in south Baltimore turns food scraps into rich garden soil. Today, two Open Society Institute fellows share fresh ideas to improve city life. Mariah Pratt Bonkowski founded “Pantries of Peace” to remove obstacles that make typical food pantries hard to access. And Marvin Hayes, founder of the “Baltimore Compost Collective,” describes how composting can create jobs, clean the air, and make food more secure.” Listen here.
“As an OSI Community Fellow, Hayes wants to teach more youth about composting and green jobs and expand his composting system at the garden to be able to handle more food scraps. Through the collective, he already works with a group of students at Benjamin Franklin High School, who have launched a zero-waste challenge and a composting project at the school, as well as school groups from across Baltimore who come to the garden to learn about small-scale composting and alternatives to trash incineration.” Read more.
November 25, 2019
On this episode, host Linda Bilsens Brolis is joined by Marvin Hayes of the Baltimore Compost Collective. Marvin and Linda talk about how the Baltimore Compost Collective is empowering and employing local youth while also creating a model that can be replicated throughout the City of Baltimore to create a distributed composting infrastructure. Listen here.
Building Local Power Podcast: Why Scale Matters in Protecting the Climate and How Composting Can Help
September 19, 2019
Host Hibba Meraay is joined by Brenda Platt, Director of ILSR’s Composting for Community Initiative. Hibba and Brenda dive into the climate crisis and what communities are doing at the local level to address it. The Baltimore Compost Collective is featured as an example, starting at minute 20. Listen here.
September 4, 2019
“In a sunny hilltop pasture just five blocks above the sprawl of the CSX railyard and the dusty black mounds of the Curtis Bay Coal Pier, 16-year-old Kenny Moss dips his hand into a wood-frame compost bin. ‘Feel how hot it is,’ he says, extending a palmful of ‘black gold’ toward fellow urban gardener Precious Fraling, 41, who’s here to learn about composting for her own community garden in the Govans neighborhood, 13 miles north.” Read more.
May 12, 2019
“Ever since supporters of the Filbert Street Garden learned the city might displace them in order to build a water pumping station, they’ve been working to save the revered South Baltimore community hub.” Read more.
April 25, 2019
“Hayes runs the Baltimore Compost Collective, tucked away behind the beehives and babbling duck ponds of the Filbert Street Garden. It’s an oasis in a neighborhood better known for elevated asthma rates and industrial pollution.” Read more.
April 22, 2019
“Local compost efforts like Hayes’ may seem small, but collectively they could generate major momentum. Organic waste stubbornly remains one of the biggest components of municipal garbage. Food scraps, yard clippings and food industry trash, among other things, constitute as much as 40 percent of the waste stream in some cities. Stepping up composting efforts point the way to large reductions in the amount of trash that has no other place to go but landfill or burning in either incinerators or waste-to-energy plants.” Read more.
March 22, 2019
“The largest community garden in Baltimore is aiming to make Baltimore more sustainable and push the city toward zero-waste, but it is under threat of demolition by the city.” Read more.
March 3, 2019
“The Filbert Street Garden’s supporters brought their ‘A game’ to Friday’s meeting about city plans to possibly take their one-acre patch of carefully-tended space in Curtis Bay and use it for a Department of Public Works water pumping station.” Read more.
February 28, 2019
February 25, 2019
“To get an idea of what the Filbert Street Garden means to Curtis Bay, imagine more than tomatoes, zucchini, zinnias, strawberries, pumpkins and all the other things grown at this hilltop garden in far South Baltimore since it was created 10 years ago. Consider the kids and parents dressed up in costumes for last October’s Halloween party…or the Baltimore Compost Collective based there, a project that recycles food scraps and, along the way, helps young people turn their lives around.” Read more.
February 7, 2019
“This past fall, we took our first cohort of apprentices with the Urban Roots Apprenticeship to a composting workshop led by the Baltimore Compost Collective, a small youth empowerment and composting nonprofit located inside the Filbert Street Community Garden in Curtis Bay. Over the past few months, it has been a pleasure getting to know the folks involved in this project, who are working everyday to advocate for cleaner air and fresher food for their community. The garden is an oasis in a community that lacks access to fresh food and fresh air.” Read more.
January 30, 2019
Marvin Hayes was interviewed for WPKN Community Radio’s segment “Digging in the Dirt” with Kevin Gallagher. They discussed the Baltimore Compost Collective and the history of waste issues in Baltimore. Listen here.
January 14, 2019
Recently, Marvin Hayes and Kenny joined the rally against subsidies for the Wheelabrator incinerator held at Baltimore City Hall. Check them out in the lead photo on this article, holding up the Baltimore Compost Collective sign! See article.
December 13, 2018
“Among those key players is the Baltimore Compost Collective, which has made a strong impact over the past two years, under Hayes’s leadership, on the Curtis Bay community where it is based. Local youths run the food-scrap collection operation out of the Filbert Street Garden and currently pick up food waste from 41 customers.” Read more.
November 5, 2018
“Goats. A new soil shed. New batches of folks helping out. And did we mention – goats! So much keeps happening at the Filbert Street Community Garden in South Baltimore that every once in a while Marvin Hayes just has to pass it along in a flurry of texts, lest he fall too far behind.” Read more.
October 31, 2018
“In 2017, ILSR launched the Baltimore Compost Collective, a food scrap collection and composting service that is employing local youth in Curtis Bay. This year we helped organize a community bin-build of a second composting system in order to expand the site’s capacity to compost food scraps. Employees of the Compost Collective and ILSR were joined by several partners to construct the second 3-bin system.” Read more.
September 28, 2018
“This is the case made by Marvin Hayes, who runs the Baltimore Compost Collective. For the last two years, he’s employed young people to collect food waste and transform it into fertilizer used in urban farming at the Filbert Street Garden in south Baltimore. ‘I’m telling people, learn so we don’t have to burn,’ Hayes said. ‘Not only can we create a better environment, but we can create jobs — for youths, for ex-offenders, and for anyone who wants to learn composting.'” Read more.
September 25, 2018
“‘What’s so special about our program is an opportunity to work with youth to transform them and give them a skill,’ says Hayes, who runs the compost collective and is the youth supervisor.” Read more.
September 20, 2018
“The Baltimore Compost Collective, a food scrap collection service based in Baltimore, is employing local youth to pick up food waste from residential customers and turn it into compost.” Read more.
September 17, 2018
“The Filbert Street Garden sits just inside the city line in south Baltimore’s Brooklyn neighborhood. Among the ducks and chickens that call the garden home, there are flower beds, a greenhouse, bee hives, and—tucked away in the far back corner—the composting bins.” Read more.
September 10, 2018
“A visit with the Baltimore Compost Collective, the kind of project the city is embracing as part of its war on food waste.” Read more.
September 5, 2018
“‘A rind is a terrible thing to waste,’ says Marvin Hayes, program director for Baltimore Compost Collective, a West Baltimore community group dedicated to turning food scraps into useable compost.” Read more.
September 5, 2018
“Any responsible food consumer knows you shouldn’t simply toss your unused produce into the Jones Falls. Those old tomatoes could become potent soil for future tomatoes, and other unused items that are often thrown out could still be edible and useful to those going hungry.” Read more.
August 9, 2018
“Curtis Bay is a historically disenfranchised neighborhood in Baltimore and one of the most polluted zip codes in the country. A long industrial history has left it with a legacy of environmental contamination and associated avertable health impacts.” Read more.