Rocket Food Waste Compost Machines

The Rocket "in vessel" composter is a robust machine that processes food, green and organic waste on-site, converting it into a valuable resource.

The Rocket Composter – a commercial scale food waste composting system

The Rocket systems are used around the world at hotels and hospitality sites, large headquarters, oil and gas field canteens and as part of projects to reduce CO2 footprint

Our range of in-vessel Rocket food waste composters

The Rocket Composter is a robust, high quality machine that processes commercial scale food waste and green waste on site, using natures own process of composting.

Invented by Tidy Planet and now in its 20th year of manufacturing, there are over 1,000 machines in operation across the globe.

Composting on site is the most sustainable way of dealing with food or green waste and converting it into a precious resource that’s rich in nutrition and organic matter and perfect for capturing carbon and improving soil health.

Rocket Composters are being used in a multitude of sectors, helping cities, colleges, universities, luxury hotels, oil field canteens, mines and prisons and many more to close the food waste loop and care for our planet.

Advantages of Rocket food waste composting

Our machines benefit from 20 years of constant development and improvement and are built to last, with few moving parts and high quality construction. In fact we have many machines still in operation after more than 15 years of active service.

Because Rocket composting at source converts food waste using natural processes, minimal energy and no transportation the carbon footprint is as low as possible.

The process not only eliminates food waste but produces an organic material that’s perfect not only for improving soil health and growing plants but replacing the need for artificial fertilisers.

And finally, with many years of experience gained from helping businesses on their composting journey our clients can be assured they will get all the support they need to compost successfully.

For more details on the multiple benefits of composting click here

How do Rocket composters work?

Though Tidy Planet’s range of Rocket Composters go from 20kg up to 5000kg per day, they all follow the same basic principles, optimising and speeding up the natural composting process.

Food, green or animal wastes are loaded into the machine over the course of the day, along with woodchip to provide essential carbon and help with aeration.

Then, naturally occurring microbes within the process get to work, with the Rocket adding gentle aeration and mixing with controlled air flow to help them thrive.

After only 10-14 days, the organic waste comes out of the other end of the machine converted into a valuable resource, an end to end process with minimal energy consumption and maximum environmental benefit.

See how the Rocket Composter works


Rocket Composter Range



Processes up to 40 litres of food waste per day.

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Processes up to 100 litres of food waste per day.

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Processes up to 215 litres of food waste per day.

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Processes up to 650 litres of food waste per day.

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Processes up to 2000 litres of organic waste per day.

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Containerised food waste recycling systems.

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Data Sheets & Resources

Clients and countries creating rocket compost – click the dots to see more

Tidy Planet Map

Here are some our most commonly asked questions…

This is one of the most common things we’re asked here at Tidy Planet, and the answer is no, they’re very different.

Dried food waste has the water evaporated out of it at a high heat, to reduce its moisture and weight by up to 90%  resulting in an inert, stabilised powder, that can be used as a valuable fuel resource,
and not in the ground to grow produce.

That’s because as it hasn’t been through a complex biological transformation like compost, it’s missing in beneficial properties that aid moisture retention, soil structure, and microorganisms that benefit
the ground and help plant growth.

As a result, the composting process takes up to 14 days, while dehydration only takes one.

Any process claiming to produce compost in 24 hours isn’t producing ‘compost’ at all.

Food waste drying is a great solution for firms which simply want to reduce their off-site disposal costs quickly and decrease the amount of food waste being landfilled and don’t want to produce a compost
resource on site. However, the drying process uses more energy than composting, so has a higher carbon footprint.





There’s a place at the commercial food waste management table for both composting and anaerobic digestion (AD), depending on the individual needs of businesses and communities.

Here at Tidy Planet, we belong to #TeamCompost, and here’s why…

10 reasons why we prefer composting over AD


Commercial composting can be implemented on a more localised on-site scale, providing jobs for communities and championing the power of societal collaboration.


Decentralised composting means elimination of transport but the possibility of collection by greener transport methods, such as bicycles, instead of relying on trucks, thus reducing carbon emissions!


Composting food waste builds soil carbon structure and improves its fertility. As a result, this supports greater food security and regenerative farming practices.


Composting treats food waste as a resource, not as ‘rubbish’  and this is vital for creating a truly circular economy.


AD doesn’t produce ‘renewable energy’ in the traditional sense like wind or solar. Instead food waste is converted into a methane-rich biogas and burned as a fuel producing carbon emissions, so this terminology is arguably misleading.


While the Waste Hierarchy states AD is better than landfill, so is everything else. Therefore, this shouldn’t be used as a selling point. All options should be considered in priority order, with prevention being the ultimate goal.


Decentralised composting helps to reduce feedstock contamination, as this is done on a smaller scale and by the human eye, rather than chopping and screening systems which can easily miss items, particularly plastics. This is of a major concern to the UK Environment Agency.


AD digestates are often promoted as alternative ‘green fertilisers’ for applying to land, but often contain lots of microplastics, which contaminate the land for generations to come.


The high nitrogen levels and lack of carbon or structure in digestate has the same negative effects as synthetic fertilisers,  damaging the soil system, which leads to soil degradation and erosion and runs off into waterways.


Unlike AD, anyone can compost on site! All you need is space to house the commercial composting unit and a desire to harness food waste as a resource!

The verdict? Hands down, the carbon-footprint winner here is on-site composting!

Learn more about composting vs. anaerobic digestion

Yes, you can – but only under the right conditions…

As environmental awareness has grown, compostable packaging has had a surge in adoption and usage among both individuals and businesses alike.

The truth is that these sustainable, plant-based packaging alternatives are only better than their single-use counterparts if they are indeed composted, otherwise they’re simply a costlier route to landfill.

All compostable packaging is designed to break down naturally when composted, but it needs to be processed under the correct conditions – just like food or garden waste. Therefore, you need to ensure that your packaging is separated

from your general waste, and that you have a system in place which guarantees it goes to a certified composting facility, or you can do it yourself, on site!

Some packaging manufacturers have started to put collection and local composting measures in place for their products, all at a fee for the customer, but here at Tidy Planet we’re flying the flag all the way for on-site commercial composting solutions.

By having your own equipment on premises, not only can you close the loop and save on the costs and carbon emissions associated with third-party collections, but you can also create a valuable resource in the process.


Head over to our FAQs page!

It supports soil regeneration, reversing the effects of climate change and it has both environmental and financial advantages for businesses.

In a word NO!

Composting requires the natural action of microbes to breakdown the complex chemical molecules in food waste. Any equipment producing compost in 24 hrs is a heating process removing the water and simply producing dried food waste. This shouldn’t be used as a soil improver or growth medium as you would compost. In the UK after drying food waste remains classified as waste.

But don’t take our word for it, see below regulatory guidance from the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency on the subject

“Composting” is defined in the Waste Management Licensing (Scotland) Regulations 2011 (WMLR), as– “the autothermic [i.e. self-heating] and thermophilic [i.e. 40-80°C] biological decomposition and stabilisationof biodegradable waste under controlled aerobic conditions that result in a stable sanitised material that can be applied to land for the benefit of agriculture, horticulture or ecological improvement”.

Processes that do not meet the definition of composting but treat food waste using heat, chemicals or biological agents to reduce the water content or volume, may be suitable for the pre-treatment of food waste prior to its separate collection and onward transport to an authorised treatment facility, e.g. an in- vessel composting (IVC) or an anaerobic digestion (AD) facility. However the residues from such processes remain waste, are not compost and are not suitable for application to land

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