U DOO Does a Garden Good
By Jody Record, Campus Journal Editor
April 23, 2008
Now that the snow is really gone, people are busy getting their hands dirty
as they ready their gardens for the season. A great way to help those gardens
grow is by using U DOO, UNH’s own compost.
The university’s composting program began as a way to reduce food waste
and increase awareness about the food cycle. Research had been conducted at
Kingman Farm during the 1990s to produce a high quality soil enrichment using
Then, in 1998, the Office of Sustainability partnered with Dining Services
to turn food scraps into compost. Now, upwards of 40,000 pounds of food are
collected from dining halls each month.
Before it becomes compost, the food is pulverized by pulpers installed in
each dining hall. The pulpers act like a garbage disposal, grinding the food
into tiny pieces while extracting the liquid, making the raw waste easier to
transport. The dry material also decomposes more quickly, eliminating odor
The buckets of waste are taken to Kingman Farm where they are added to one
of the eight windrows—200-yard long rows of compost piles. Other materials
in the windrows—the most common form of farm composting--include manure,
crops and plants, sawdust and other organic waste colleted at UNH.
A tractor is used to make a hole in the windrow so the waste can be added.
In the spring, the compost is sifted and collected in 35-pound bags to be
sold as U DOO.
John McLean, manager of UNH’s Kingman and Woodman farms, says workers
have filled about 1,500 bags this year.
U DOO, which sells for $5 a bag, can be purchased now through May 29 at Kingman
Farm Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 3p.m. or at the Durham Market Place.
The compost is also sold by the yard ($35 a square yard).
“It’s going fast,” McLean says of U DOO. “As fast
as we bring it in to the Durham Market Place, it’s going out. It’s
To place a compost order, call Kingman Farm at 749-4578.