We provide a weekly curbside compost pickup service for your household food scraps in the Elmwood Charter Township neighborhoods. The food scraps are taken to our farm to be composted down into rich garden soil. (which you’ll get back!) All pickups are done with a bike and trailer to cut down on emissions and noise, plus it keeps us in shape! You might have heard of a similar service in downtown Traverse City called Carter’s Compost. They were a big inspiration for us!

*Our service area is generally the first mile of Cherry Bend Rd. and surrounding neighborhoods.


Perks of Curbside Compost Pick-up Service:

  • In the spring, you will receive 4 full buckets of finished compost, ready to be applied to your garden or landscape
  • You get a discount on our Pastured Non-GMO Pork and Poultry (and eventually our Veggies too!)
  • Free admission to educational workshops, tours, and events at our farm
  • Receive a free month of pick-up service when you refer another family to sign up
  • Reduce emissions through our human-powered waste transport (versus diesel powered)
  • Keep our nutrients cycling locally! Food scraps contain a lot of valuable minerals and nutrients that should stay in our local food system
  • Strengthen our local economy by keeping your dollars cycling locally as well

The basic cost of the service is $16 per month. This includes one pickup per week, and a 5 gallon bucket and lid to contain your food scraps. Click the button below to sign up for service! If you have more questions, keep reading or give us a call (231) 499-2658 or email (RealeyesHomestead@gmail.com).

Signup for Our Compost Pickup Service > 


How it Works

Our standard service includes the once-weekly pickup of a 5 gallon bucket of your food scraps. Right now we’re not offering service when there’s significant snow, but we hope to eventually offer year-round service.  The cost of this service is $4 per week, or $16 per month. We can provide you with a bucket and lid.

We ask that you line the inside of our bucket with a compostable paper to cut down on our bucket washing time. A paper grocery bag or newspaper work well as liner material. Then deposit your food scraps into the paper throughout the week, replacing the lid each time to prevent scavengers from getting into it. Instead of snapping the lid onto the bucket, we find it works well to set the lid on top with a stone or weight on the lid.

What To Compost:

Yes –

  • Veggies, Plant matter
  • Meat, Bones
  • Uncoated Paper (napkins, paper plates)
  • Compostable Service-ware 
  • Fish, shells
  • Egg shells
  • Bread, rice, flour, baked goods, pasta, dough
  • Dairy, Cheese, Butter
  • Tea, Coffee Grounds and filters
  • Spoiled or moldy foods

No – 

  • Watery/Soupy Waste
  • Rubber
  • Glass
  • Plastic
  • Metal
  • Sticks/Brush/Weeds (Contact us about yard waste and leaf drop off)


If you need more than one 5 gallon bucket, or more frequent pickups then we can work with your needs, just contact us about it. Pickups will usually be done Saturday morning or early afternoon. You don’t need to put your bucket all the way out by the road, we can come get it from next to your house or garage. Please do ensure that it is fairly visible for us to find. 


Why Composting/Food-waste Recycling

Wait! Before you toss those food scraps into the trash, please take a moment to think about what they represent…

Each vegetable we eat uses the suns energy to accumulate vitamins and minerals, and build sugars and starches. These are the basic building blocks and fuel of almost all living things on earth. However, these valuable resources aren’t being well managed. Our agricultural soils are losing their fertility at a rate of about 1% per year. Part of the problem is that much of our food waste ends up in landfills. Those precious vitamins, minerals and organic matter will never again enter our food system. Instead they often rot and release large amounts of methane, which is a potent greenhouse gas. It’s just bad news all around.

We thought, why not capture this valuable resource and turn it back into a useful product; Compost! Compost is an organic soil amendment full of nutrients and beneficial organisms ready to feed our vegetable plants once again. This closes the loop to form a more sustainable food system. In nature, there really is no such thing as “Waste.” 


Who We Are

Hi. We’re your neighbors, Levi and Brenda Meeuwenberg along with a whole bunch of friends, family, plants and animals. We run a small farm on our old Hines family farm on Cherry Bend road called Realeyes Homestead. For the last few years we’ve been raising pastured pork and poultry, recycling and composting our food waste, gardening, and starting a small perennial edible plant nursery. 

Our aim is to restore the farm soil to full health, plant trees, and produce nutrient dense food. We’re passionate about keeping things local and transparent, so we’re happy to give tours as well! As we grow, we will offer fun, educational workshops for the whole family, on topics such as home-scale composting, backyard chickens, low-maintenance gardening, uncommon fruit and berries and much more.

We want to help create a healthier, safer, more beautiful community for our kids to grow up in, and so we intend to start (and end) right here in our neighborhood. Thank you so much for your support!

Sign up for Our Compost Pickup Service >