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Master Composters

Stop Food Waste has been running the National Master Composter Training programme since 2009. Master Composters are individuals who are trained on all aspects of home composting and food waste prevention.

After receiving the hands on training our volunteers are expected to commit some of their time to work in their local communities to promote the Stop Food Waste messages.


Piloted in Frenchpark, Co. Roscommon in 2009, thirty people from local communities became Ireland’s first Master Composters. Since then over 300 Master Composters have been trained at 14 different demo sites throughout Ireland. Through this network of volunteers 60 local projects are currently in operation around the country. In addition to setting up specific projects our Master Composters have been actively involved in promoting Stop Food Waste at many different events both locally and nationally.

For more information on what Master Composters do see the following:

The Master Composter programme has resulted in the establishment of many home composting demonstration sites in locations such as public parks, allotments, adult education centres, and housing estates.

View Master Composter Sites in Ireland in a larger map

Master Composters have become involved in hundreds of activities, from Saint Patrick’s Day floats to sharing recipes for Christmas leftovers, from summer fairs to winter markets. They have answered thousands of queries about home composting and food waste management. As well as helping others (and the environment), the Master Composters have benefited greatly from their training – some have gone on to do vocational courses in organic horticulture and similar disciplines.

Each Master Composter will find different ways to contribute, as suits their own personality and circumstances.


  • Schools – those with gardens and those that don’t, which may need encouragement
  • Allotment groups and gardening clubs
  • Tidy Towns groups
  • Active Retirement groups, ICA, and other community associations
  • Guest speakers at evening classes in Gardening


  • Schools
  • Neighbourhood events
  • Local garden centres
  • To your next-door neighbours
  • Set up a home composting demonstration site

Written articles

  • Promotion in the local press – the benefits of home made compost
  • Articles in the gardening section of the local paper
  • Promotion of the local sales of green waste compost
  • Newsletters for allotment groups or local resident community groups
  • Articles in Parish/Community/ Church Magazines

Other promotion ideas

  • Help promote future sales of compost bins
  • Help develop education programmes for schools and colleges
  • Help at council run roadshows
  • Help design leaflets
  • Contribute to websites

Other ways to help

  • Set up a community composting demo site
  • Help run a community compost demo site
Anyone can become a Master Composter – you do not have to already be an expert in composting or even interested in gardening. During the training course, which typically involves 3 evening sessions and 2 weekend sessions over 6-8 weeks, you will be trained in all aspects of home composting including the basics (how it works) and the how to compost using the different systems (holding bins, wormeries, etc.). In addition to all things composting we also provide training about all aspects of food waste, and more importantly how to prevent it!

Once trained we expect our volunteers to commit some of their time to help promote home composting and food waste prevention in their local communities. How any individual volunteer decides to do this is completely up to them and we love to hear new and innovative ideas. Stop Food Waste will be there to provide any extra training, expertise or materials that may be needed for your local initiatives.

There are Master Composters of every age group and they come from a wide variety of backgrounds so if you are interested in getting a Master Composter training course running in your area, please get in touch.

Many of our Mater Composters are involved with Tidy Towns or other community groups or associations. Stop Food Waste wants to partner with these groups to help them develop initiatives to help their community and educate people about how this can be done easily and effectively.


More importantly, we can help villages and towns understand how to score more points on their Tidy Town assessments. For example, Stop Food Waste helped the Tidy Town national winner in 2012, Abbeyshrule, County Longford, with setting up a composting system for community generated materials and using grasscycling and mulching to cut down on work and green waste. In 2013, we also assisted county winners Geashill and Blackwater in Offaly and Wexford respectively.