The Speedibin Composter: Innovative garden technology from the Comox Valley

Joyce McMenamon didn’t invent the Speedibin Composter. But she did revive her father’s 1987 design, putting it through 22 prototypes. Now she’s shipping across North America.

What makes the Speedibin unique?

The Speedibin is more than a humble composter. Made entirely of metal, they’re vermin “resistant” and easy to use.

A few years ago City Farmer in Vancouver asked Joyce to “please start making Speedibins again.” Why? Composting had become very popular in the city. But rats and racoons were loving how easy it was to get into the plastic bins.

Built of sheet metal, Speedbins ship in a flat package and are easy to assemble. Good for humans. Bad for rats, mice, and racoons that find them tamper proof. McMenamon even gives workshops on how to make Speedibins bear resistant.

More good news for humans: the removable lid makes loading and mixing easy. When the microbes and worms have transformed all that waste into glorious black gold, the front panel removes for easy unloading.

It’s not just about keeping the vermin out

McMenamon is an avid gardener. She understands the imporance of rat-resistant composting. What she’s most excited about, however, is having developed an easy-to use, practical solution to an even more pressing problem: soil exhaustion. Mono-cropping and continuous-cropping inevitably lead to nutrient loss. Composting is the easiest way to organically rebuild soil. “If all the people who can would put their yard waste and kitchen scrap back into the soil,” she says, “the microbes and worms would quickly rebuild the soil.”

Where to buy

Because of their vermin-resistant qualities they’ve been picked up by some school gardens, including several in New York City. McMenamon sees the Speedibin’s future in North American sales. “We’re already shipping to Saskatchewan, Newfoundland, and now the United States,” she says. This rat-resistant solution to some of our landfill and “peak soil” issues is also attracting attention from New Zealand. If you’re from outside of the Comox Valley you can order your Speedibin Composter at

If you’re in the Comox Valley region, Port Hardy, Parksville, or Calgary you can find Speedibin Composters are at several local locations.

Speedibin is now a #WeAreYQQ Champion

Speedibin was an early beneficiary of the #WeAreYQQ business development workshop series. “It’s been vey helpful,” McMenamon says. “Being a sole proprietor, living in Merville, working in a vacuum: it’s a challenge. The workshops have been very helpful because they not only give me valuable insights and information, they also give me a supportive, entrepreneur-minded group of people to work with. That’s huge.”

As a business owner and entrepreneur McMenamon sees considerable value in the #WeAreYQQ Project. In 2016 she was an early adopter, and signed on as an annual #WeAreYQQ Champion. Want to grow your business with our collaborative marketing and business and community economic development workshops? For more information about what business benefits a Champion membership brings, call Cathy Snyder at 250-703-3057 or sign up online at the “Join Us! tab.” Or just come out to one  of our events and see if working collaboratively with entrepreneurs is part of your business solution. Events are listed at the “events tab.”

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