New Hotbin Composter
We now have our new Hotbin Mk2 compost bin installed and in use ready for when the Composting Demostration site reopens. We use our Hotbins as one of the systems for dealing with cooked food waste from the cafe. We use these as dual purpose bins for food and garden waste and bulking agent, The Jora (Joraform) is used when we need to compost just food waste (and bulking agent)
The Hotbin is supplied in two sizes 200 and 100 litre. It is designed for the year round composting of garden and kitchen waste, including cooked food. The Hotbin is made of insulating material (polypropylene) and if used correctly will operate at 40 - 600C reaching 700C on occasions.
The compost bin is fitted with a thermometer which allows the temperature at the top of the bin to be constantly monitored and can be supplied with an addition thermometer to allow the temperature of the compost to be measured. A ventilation flap (valve) is also fitted to allow the temperature to be moderated.
Regular monitoring of the temperature provides an indication as to when fresh food needs to be added i.e., when the compost cools to less than 40C but I would recommend the routine addition of about 10 litre of material weekly. The bin should be fed the contents of a 5 litre caddy twice a week plus 2-3 handfuls of shredded paper and 1-2 handfuls of woodchip as a bulking agent to help maintain airflow. This gives 1 part woodchip :10 parts food waste
I have found that it is relatively easy to keep the Hotbin operating during the winter provided it is fed regularly. The Hotbin lid thermometer measures the temperature of the steam rising from the composting material and unless the bin is over half full it will record a temperature 10-20°C below that of the most active part of the composting material. A long stem thermometer should be used to obtain accurate measurement of the working temperature in the most active layer of waste between 5-10cm from the surface. More info on food waste composting click on the link Composting Food
For details of trasessions on Cooked Food composting contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo of bin in domestic setting provided by Hotbin