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Dairy Doo: How a former dairy farm became a leading composter

As part of Food Waste Prevention Week, MI Environment is featuring a story from NextCycle, an grantee of the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE).

Morgan Composting, also known as DAIRY DOO, has composting, soil blending, and fertilizer granulating operations on five separate sites in Michigan. The original 30-acre facility opened in 1996 on the site of a former dairy farm in Sears, Mich. Operations have since expanded to include a 15-acre, a 4-acre, and two 5-acre sites strategically located in other parts of the state close to the material sources and markets. 

Dairy Doo compost hoop house in use.

Dairy Doo compost hoop house in use. 


Morgan Composting is a registered compost site with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) and is approved to process yard waste, food waste and food processing residuals, manures, waste wood, and wood ash. In 2019, the Sears site brought in close to 60,000 cubic yards (cy) of compostable material. Morgan Composting composts using thermophilic windrows and vermicomposting processing methods. Incoming material is mostly manure for large-scale agriculture custom compost blends. It is also processed and used in creating granulated fertilizers and potting soils under their well-recognized DAIRY DOO label. They also take in yard waste from as far as Kalamazoo, food waste from Central Michigan University (some with compostable products mixed in), as well as bales of shredded paper for the vermicomposting operation and multiple recyclable byproducts from industry partners.   

The Challenge

Ever increasing demand for organic soil products for homeowner and agricultural uses requires that Morgan Composting continue to grow in both innovative product solutions and market reach. Expanding their operations and markets through partnerships with dealers, customers, and state grants allows the company to continuously evolve and provide the region with quality compost and blended products that help to divert waste from the landfill and build healthy soils.

The Solution

Morgan Composting has a long history of supporting farmers and homeowners across the US. They continue to expand their operations and experiment with innovative processing methods and equipment. In 2020, they invested in a granulator to produce organic fertilizer and have expanded their use of super sacks to provide high volumes of soil products to the agricultural markets. In 2019, they received an EGLE Market Development grant of over $330,000 to develop a hoop house at their Sears site for blending organic composts and potting soils for homeowner use and custom blends for agricultural needs. Not only does Morgan Composting provide agronomical expertise, soil testing, and prescription blends, but they participate in youth gardening and 4-H educational programs to teach young farmers and gardeners about the importance of soil health and healthy food. Morgan Composting is the proud recipient of One of the Top 50 Small Businesses to Watch in Michigan in 2020. Morgan Composting’s Vice President, Justin Morgan, was also named one of Fruit + Vegetable Top 40 Under 40 in 2020.

The results

Morgan Composting is a leader in Michigan for marketing their products under their DAIRY DOO label and continuously developing new product labels for their numerous compost blends, potting soils, and granulated fertilizers. They provide consultation and expertise to their dealers and customers on not only what’s best for their soils, but also solutions for how they can use their own material to produce and retain quality soil on their own land. Morgan Composting is looking for additional partnerships to expand operations in other regions of Michigan and enhance the capabilities of our natural resources for a sustainable agricultural future.