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Expanded, world class composting coming to Marquette County

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Partnership between the City of Ishpeming and Partridge Creek Compost secures $300,000 USDA Grant 

Ishpeming, Mich, August 1, 2023 – The City of Ishpeming and Partridge Creek Compost (PCC) have secured a $300,000 federal USDA grant to create a world class, centrally located, composting facility within Marquette County that will benefit Ishpeming residents, along with institutions and businesses throughout Marquette County. 

The City of Ishpeming will contract with Partridge Creek Compost for the expansion of its composting program, and provide composting service to the entire Ishpeming community as a waste diversion strategy. Through this grant, PCC will open a monitored, weekly household compost drop-off site for Ishpeming residents, and initiate a pilot household compost pick up by spring 2025. PCC is building additional composting infrastructure and the City of Ishpeming will partner with PCC through this municipal grant to provide support for this transition.

“Many Ishpeming residents display environmental consciousness, and the city is exploring ways to incorporate these concepts into our governing policies and programs,” said Craig Cugini, city manager of Ishpeming. “As we investigated options surrounding our waste collection, we determined potential viable options for improvement. One such area included composting biomass solids.”

The City of Ishpeming and Partridge Creek Farm first partnered together in 2017. In June 2023, Partridge Creek Farm launched a sister non-profit (Partridge Creek Compost) focused solely on the diversion, collection and processing of compostable waste, further expanding the partnership with the City of Ishpeming, Ishpeming Schools, Northern Michigan University, restaurants, and other Marquette County partners and municipalities.

“Approximately 60 percent of what goes into our county landfill consists of organic waste…waste that can be incrementally diverted, collected, and composted,” said Dan Perkins, director of Partridge Creek Compost. “Our goals with this expanded program are straightforward. We’d like to increase the intake of compostable material and develop the processing capacity to handle the additional material, all while providing informational campaigns and composting opportunities for residents and businesses.”

Ishpeming residents who are interested in the pilot program for curbside compost pickup are being asked to show their interest by signing up on The curbside pickup program will launch in the highest concentration of interest between October 2023, and May 2024, depending on equipment lead times and access to funding. For more information about this program expansion as a whole, please visit:

About Ishpeming

The City of Ishpeming is located in Marquette County in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and is home to about 6,600 residents. Boasting a rich mining heritage, creative small businesses, dozens of miles of trails and many outdoor amenities, and a community-centric culture, Ishpeming is a wonderful place to live, work, and play. During 2023, Ishpeming is proud to celebrate its sesquicentennial birthday, honoring the past 150 years and looking ahead to a bright future. To learn more about Ishpeming, visit

About Partridge Creek Compost

Partridge Creek Compost is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that seeks to pave the way for Marquette County’s sustainable future by keeping compostable waste out of the county landfill, and improving soil health. It is in our mission to direct all income, after operating expenses, to Partridge Creek Farm (PCF) to allow them to expand their educational and community engagement work. Creating a robust community and food system takes many moving pieces. Compost ties all those pieces together by turning unused food back into soil to grow new food; underpinning what will allow our communities to become increasingly self-reliant, healthy, and connected. Nothing builds community like food and gardening. And nothing grows food like Partridge Creek Compost. Learn more at


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