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about us

We are a cooperatively-managed group that works together to recycle food and yard waste. Our focus is to make the highest-quality end product possible for urban food growing. 

Our Mission: to provide products and services that will help create a profitable market for urban farming in Pittsburgh.

Our vision: is small-scale, on-farm compost systems which work together with design and operation of urban farms.  By networking and pooling our resources to distribute to smaller sites, we can work together to create an urban food network that will thrive in Pittsburgh.

Steel City Soils LLC was formed in 2009 as a worker-owned company.  Since then, we have been developing methods for comprehensive soil testing, and on-farm, urban-farm composting.  In late 2014, we purchased our location in Braddock, PA.  In 2015 we received fiscal sponsorship from New Sun Rising 501c3 as well as acceptance into the year-long, Food Hub Incubator Program.

 
 
 

Why Compost?

We believe that urban farming has the potential to alleviate many environmental issues.  Local urban food production is integral to the design of resilient and sustainable cities.  Compost and other organic materials are the most important first step in improving soils for organic farming. 

Composting is an art as well as a science.  It takes skill, experience and some special equipment.  Most urban farms do not have the resources or labor to operate large compost systems.  That's where we come in. 

What We Do:

We create and sell compostand soil amendments online and at farmers' markets around Pittsburgh.  We offer soil testing and soil improvement programs for urban farms. We work with larger urban farms to develop on-farm systems.  Smaller urban farms can donate work hours in exchange for compost.  Individuals who volunteer at our site can take finished compost home or donate their portion to their favorite urban farm project.  10% of our finished compost is donated to local urban farming projects.

Our compost is made from organic food waste and wood chips. It is treated by thermophyllic (above 131 deg. F) composting. It is cured for 2-4 months then sifted through 1/2" screen. Steel City Soils is dedicated to producing the highest quality compost for urban farms and gardeners to help build the best soil for growing.

If you want more info or to buy compost visit our online store or our stand at Squirrel Hill Farmers' Market to get more information on why composting is so important!