How Compost Works - Get the Dirt on Dirt



Food Cycler, composting science, science of compost, how compost works, how does compost work, how does decomposition work

Compost R Us

Let’s consider a compost pile like your average small-business that you, as the new CEO, are taking over for the first time.

If you’re going to run a business, you have to meet the people who work for you.

The same thing goes for compost. There are a few big players in compost piles, which are responsible for the breakdown process. To understand the science of decomposition, you should first understand just how the decomposers in the equation operate.

The departments:

  • Microorganisms (need a microscope to see them)

  • Macroorganisms (visible to the naked eye)

Let’s meet the team!

Microorganisms (Bacteria)

Aerobic bacteria are the teeny-tiny workhorses of the compost pile. 25 000 of them, end-to-end, would barely cover an inch! Despite their tiny size, they do most of the work.

Much like us humans, aerobic bacteria require food, air and water to survive.

Food Cycler, composting science, science of compost, how compost works, how does compost work, how does decomposition work

Aerobic bacteria consume carbon and nitrogen as a food source. They are called “chemical decomposers” because the way they break down your food waste actually changes the chemical composi