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  • Is newspaper safe to compost?

    Created by ralph a orofino on

    Good afternoon –

    You state that shredded newspaper can be used, even the ink that is used? I know not to use the glossy papers and the cartoon section. I didn’t know that you could use the black ink version?

    Thank you. ralph

  • Author
  • #262008

    Eric Vinje

    Hi Ralph –

    These days, most newspaper inks are soy-based and no longer contain lead, a good thing for the environment (though the soy used in inks is likely from GMO sources). But some inks may still contain petro-chemicals or pigments if they include color as most papers do. Also newsprint may hold some chlorine from the bleaching process.

    Newspaper is bleached less than most commercial office papers but may still contain some chlorine. This is a good reason not to compost office paper, mail or magazines. Slick papers of the sort used by magazines are also treated with petro-chemicals, so that they won’t yellow and break down as quickly as newsprint.

    If you do use newsprint, be sure it’s shredded. If not, it may still be in you pile a year later, impeding good circulation of air and moisture. However, when in doubt — keep it out.

    Hope it helps!

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