Published by City Farmer, Canada's Office of Urban Agriculture


Vancouver's Worm Program Written-up in Der Spiegel Magazine

Der Spiegel magazine published a story about Vancouver's worm composting program in their well-read magazine on page 182 of issue No. 39, dated September 20, 2004. Their circulation is around 1.1 million and the magazine is distributed in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, as well as all over the world at foreign language newsstands. So far there is no English language edition.


Worms as Kitchen Helpers

Tranlation by Jennifer Meier
Worm bins for the processing of organic kitchen wastes are becoming increasingly popular with city dwellers, who do not have access to a yard for outdoor composting purposes. A special type of redworm devours pre-digested organic food particles in freezer compartment-sized, aerobic boxes. Best suited species: the reddish-fleshy redworm "Eisenia foetida." After the meal, the animals shed their food as dark humus. Approximately one pound of worms is sufficient to convert over two kilograms of kitchen waste per week into a nutrient-rich product. According to experts, odour issues are negligible. Kids love the performance of the parasitic kitchen slaves that feast on garbage. In Vancouver, Canada, where worm composting has been promoted and financed by the local government for some time, there are long waiting lists for weekly worm composting workshops. A recently established hotline for worm composters now ensures timely advice in emergencies, such as when a few of the wiggling helpers may have escaped.

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Revised September 29, 2004

Published by City Farmer
Canada's Office of Urban Agriculture