This is a really interesting program (nearly 30 min) about Mark ‘The Worm Guy’ Yelken, a worm farmer (and president of Jonesy Environmental Services) on Vashon Island , Washington. Here is a blurb from his website (link to follow):
Vashon Island’s landfill is full and closed. All waste and recycling has to be hauled off of the island. It is the goal of Jonesy Environmental Services to create a full circle approach and turn the food and yard waste into compost by systems using worms and keep it on the island for use in resident’s yards and gardens. The waste (grocery store food waste, restaraunts prep waste, resident kitchen scraps and, ultimately, clean yard waste). Education is the critical portion to help make this program successful.
Jonesy Environmental Services plans to partnership with Earthcorp, Seattle Tilth, Washington Tilth, King County, Sustainable Vashon, Heifer International and like minded organizations for education opportunities for residents, businesses, schools, civic clubs and fairs regarding the benefit of worms, worm bins, composting and how this can help our environment. A sustainable, full circle approach.
In October 2005, a vermicompost system, that allows worms to compost 200 pounds of food waste per day, was purchased to help eliminate all food waste from the businesses and residents of Vashon Island. The “green” food waste is picked up from the grocery stores, restaurants, coffee and tea establishments, the local country club, Senior Care Center, the Food Bank and any and all residents. Pre-consumer food waste (“prep”) is collected daily at no charge to the businesses. Five gallon buckets with lids are left daily for their use. The full buckets are replaced by clean buckets. The green food waste is composted with worms to provide an end product, vermicompost, which is retained on the island and returned to the residents, at no profit, for their use in the gardens, yards and any other community purpose.
Certainly sounds as though Mark is providing a fantastic service on the island! Be sure to pop by his website to have a look around. It is jam packed with lots of info, photos etc:
The Worm Guy
[UPDATE 2018: Mark’s website is no longer online and he doesn’t seem to be involved in vermicomposting anymore]
His flow-through reactor (shown in the video) looks great, and actually looks like it would be a manageable size for an indoor location.