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How To Keep Maggots Out Of Your Compost

maggots in compost

If you’re a seasoned composter, you know that summertime can bring some unwanted visitors to your compost bucket: maggots. While maggots themselves are not harmful, they’re pretty unsightly and can create a mess of your compost bucket.

Neighborhood Compost is all too familiar with this issue. And we’re here to help make sure your compost bin stays clean and clear! Here’s a guide on how to prevent maggots from infesting your compost bin.

Address Any Fruit Flies

Fruit flies are responsible for creating maggots in your compost bucket. If you start noticing fruit flies hanging out in your kitchen or around your compost bin, you’ll want to make sure you address this issue.

Start by putting out a few fruit fly traps and keep one near your compost bin. You can purchase fruit fly traps online or make them cheap on your own! All you need is a cup, apple cider vinegar, and a bit of dish soap.

Use Brown Material to Combat Moisture

Maggots thrive in moist environments, so keeping your compost bin on the dry side is important. Using brown compost materials is the best way to combat moisture in your compost bin.

Brown compost materials refer to paper-like materials without any gloss or stickers.

You can use toilet paper rolls, paper towels, egg cartons, and more. Brown compost helps absorb moisture from nitrogen-rich food scraps.

Cover the Compost

One of the best ways to keep maggots out of your compost bin is to keep it covered. A tight, sealed cover is a simple yet effective way to prevent flies from laying eggs in your compost.

Use a tight-fitting lid, and have a solid seal around your compost bucket liner as well. You’ll also want to make sure you use a compost liner, as this will ensure your compost bin stays clean.

Freeze Meat, Dairy, and Oily Foods

composting new jersey

Certain foods tend to attract more flies. This includes meat, dairy products, and oily foods. However, you can still compost these items! One great way to compost meat, dairy, and oily food scraps is to keep them in the freezer until your compost pick-up day.

Since these kinds of food scraps take longer to decompose, they create an environment that’s ideal for maggot activity. By freezing them up until pick-up day, you’ll discourage maggots from setting up camp in your compost bin.

Request an Extra Bucket

Notice your compost bin filling up well before your pick-up day? Request an extra bucket! Neighborhood Compost offers various composting pick-up options for composting to ensure it works for your schedule and lifestyle.

Whether you want to switch from bi-weekly to weekly pick-up or need an extra bucket for your food scraps, we’ve got you covered. We typically recommend one bucket for every two people, but this can vary depending on your food scrap output.

Schedule an Additional Pick-up for Events

Summertime means gatherings and parties with family and friends. But this often means you have plenty of food scraps after a summer bbq with loved ones. One way to keep your food scraps output in check is to schedule an additional pick-up after a party.

Let us know if you have an event coming up and need an extra pick-up to handle excess food scraps. We’ll gladly swing by on our next round to grab your additional food scraps so they don’t start piling up.


Although maggots tend to be more prevalent in the summertime, they don’t have to invade your compost bin. If you seal your compost bin, keep fruit flies at bay, use brown composting materials, and empty your compost bin often, you won’t see any maggot activity.

Curious to learn more about our local composting options in New Jersey? Contact Neighborhood Compost today to learn more!

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