Frequently asked questions

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For new orders placed today, we’re estimating that they’ll be ready to ship in 6 - 9 weeks.

We'll give you a heads-up when your Mill is ready, in case you need to change your info. Cancel anytime before your bin ships for a complete refund.

The Mill kitchen bin recycles kitchen scraps into dried, ground-up food that we call Food Grounds. Food Grounds are still food, minus the water, bulk, odor, and ick.

Food Grounds aren’t compost. Compost is produced when microbes digest organic matter, which takes weeks or months, not hours — despite what others might say. While Food Grounds can be made into compost or added to your garden, it is a delicate process that can result in mold, cause odors, and attract pests.

Sending us your Food Grounds is not required, but we highly recommend it if you don't have a use for your them at home. According to the EPA and the UN, the best and highest use for uneaten food — after feeding people — is feeding animals that help to feed people. When you send us your Food Grounds, we turn them into food for chickens, providing the greatest possible impact.

We can turn them into food for chickens

Don’t have a use for your Food Grounds at home? Send them to Mill so they can go back to the farm as food for chickens. Mill pickups include home pickup (just request it in the app) with postage-paid boxes and liners. We receive shipped Food Grounds at our feed manufacturing facility where we turn them into a safe and nutritious chicken feed ingredient through inspection, screening, heating, and blending. From there, they are delivered to a local farm.

You can use them to supplement your backyard chickens’ diet

Remember that your Food Grounds are a mix of the food you couldn’t or didn’t eat and best used as a feed ingredient, not a full feed. You likely want to include other feed in your chickens’ diet too. It may also be best to not add any foods that you wouldn’t feed directly to your chickens if you didn’t have a Mill bin— this is not the case when you send Food Grounds to us because concentrations of these foods in our final commercial feed are negligible, rendering them harmless.

You can use them at home

Just remember, they’re still food so you’ll want to properly compost them so they decompose before you use them in your garden. Otherwise they might overwhelm your plants, get moldy or attract hungry critters.

The food we throw away is still food. It takes a lot of land, water, fertilizer, and effort to get food from the farm to our tables — so it’s important for our food to stay in the food system. There are ways to make the best use of food that’s uneaten. First, feed people. Then, feed animals that produce food for people. Both options align with the EPA’s food recovery hierarchy and the hierarchy of destinations for achieving United Nations Sustainable Development Goal Target 12.3.

We receive shipped Food Grounds at our feed manufacturing facility where we turn them into a safe chicken feed ingredient through inspection, screening, heating, and blending.

We’ve worked through most of the necessary scientific and regulatory processes to distribute our nutritious chicken feed ingredient commercially. We’ll share more on our progress later this year!

We designed Mill to dry and grind food scraps as efficiently as possible using integrated sensors and custom algorithms that determine the quickest runtime needed to transform your food scraps into dry grounds. Your energy use will depend on the amount and kind of kitchen scraps you add to it. We estimate the bin will use around 1 kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity per day, averaged over multiple weeks of usage (if you generate around 1.5 lbs of kitchen scraps per day). Today, that’s about the same amount of energy per day as an energy-efficient dishwasher, but with software updates, the bin will keep getting better and more efficient over time.

The cost of energy will depend on your local energy rates — you can check your energy bill to see how much you pay per kilowatt-hour (kWh). At $0.20 per kWh (approximately the national average), that’s about $6 per month.

Want to use less energy? Try limiting liquids by doing things like straining wet foods before adding the solids to the bucket.

Big picture: based on our preliminary study, you can avoid about a half-ton of greenhouse gas emissions per year with a Mill service plan. Instead of filling the air with methane, your kitchen scraps are turned into food for chickens, going right back into the food system. To learn more about the climate impact of an annual Mill service plan, click here.

If you choose to rent, your first plan payment is due when you sign up. But, your plan term doesn’t start until your Mill is delivered so you don’t lose out on any days while you’re waiting for the bin to arrive. If you purchase your Mill, then you pay the full amount when you're placing your order.

If you have Mill pickups enabled on your account, you will know it’s time to empty the bin when the Food Grounds get close to the fill line inside the bucket. Mill pickups come with prepaid boxes and liners that you can empty your Food Grounds into. The average household will need to empty their bin every 4-5 weeks, but it really depends on the amount of kitchen scraps you generate.  Each box holds about two bin-fulls. We recommend storing them in a dry place indoors with the bag liner closed until your box is ready for a full send!

Mill is designed to improve your kitchen experience and help you keep food out of landfills.

– Shrinks food by 80%: The Mill kitchen bin turns your peels, bones, stalks, and leftovers into nutrient-rich grounds. No weird smells. No drippy bags.

– Not-so-picky-eater: Unlike compost, the bin can handle whatever you can’t eat — even meat and dairy products.

– Fewer trips to the bin: Add food scraps to your bin all day, every day. The bucket can collect dry grounds for weeks without needing to be emptied. And you don’t need any additives.

– Year-round service (optional): You can ship your Food Grounds to Mill even in the winter when curbside compost collection services may not be available.

– Impact tracking: See the amount of food scraps you’re adding and learn ways to improve your climate impact over time.

We design and test every Mill to be durable and long-lasting. And because some customers may choose to rent instead of buy, bins may eventually be returned to us. This rental model enables us to support every Mill through its lifecycle, from shipping and first use to refurbishment and extended use. We ensure that no bin is unaccounted for, abandoned, or wasted, and are developing programs for bins that are no longer used for active Mill plans, specifically education programs with non-profits. If you have any suggestions on organizations we should engage, please send them to us at mill.com/contact.

Composting is a form of biological digestion that breaks down organic material and takes weeks or months, not hours or days. Be wary of any claims to the contrary.

The food-recycling Mill kitchen bin isn’t a composting device. The Food Grounds that come out of the bin are still food, minus the water, bulk, odor, and ick. The bin is designed to conserve all the potential in your kitchen scraps — not break them down — so they can have a second life.

On top of that, we designed the Mill kitchen bin to be so much more practical and convenient than any other way of managing food scraps.

  • Large capacity: Add food scraps to your bin all day, every day. The bucket can collect dry grounds for weeks without having to be emptied.
  • Automatic cycle: The bin runs at a set time every day, zero effort required.
  • Odor filtration: the filter is packed with 5 lbs of charcoal and lasts more than 6 months for most households. We’ll let you know when it’s time to replace your filter (included in your Mill essentials).
  • App: see what’s happening inside your bin, create a custom schedule, and get alerts when there’s something you need to pay attention to. Otherwise, your bin will just do its thing.
  • Impact tracking: see the amount of food scraps you’re adding and learn ways to improve your climate impact over time.

You put in kitchen scraps and the Mill kitchen bin will automatically dry and grind them overnight (or whenever you schedule your cycle to run).

- The Dry & Grind cycle slowly heats and mixes your kitchen scraps in order to conserve your food’s nutrients.

- Each cycle varies depending on the amount and moisture content of kitchen scraps you put in. Wet kitchen scraps like fruit will take a little longer, and dry scraps like bread will be shorter. See the Dry & Grind Cycle Tips article to learn more about typical cycle times depending on mass adds, as well as other tips and tricks.

- Your bin will also run periodic "Quick Mix" cycles to help prevent jams and make it easier to empty your bin once it gets full of ~6+ lbs of Food Grounds

- The bin can take a while to grind up food because it runs a low power, energy-efficient cycle.

Please note: A little bit of caking in the bucket is normal and not cause for concern. It will come off over time.

What happens to the moisture removed from my food?

- As the bin dries your food, the water evaporates and air is pushed through a sophisticated odor management system, which includes a charcoal odor filter to help de-smellify.

- This air is then expelled through the bin’s exhaust fan system out the rear sides of the device.

- In a typical room, that moisture dissipates quickly and isn't noticeable.

When the Mill kitchen bin is running a Dry & Grind cycle, the fans sound like white noise and are about as loud as a dishwasher (~44 dB). If you put in pits or bones, you might hear a quick, loud snap or clunk. Every now and then it might make a funny creak or groan as it mixes.

The bin’s fans run at a super low-energy speed throughout the day to help maintain a negative air pressure so that the bin stays smelling fresh.

As a general rule of thumb, if it comes off your cutting board or plate, you can Mill it!

Here are some examples:

– Small bones (like chicken or fish) – Fruits – Vegetables – Rinds, peels, pits – Meat, dairy, eggs – Coffee grounds

Things that don’t belong in the bin: – Large bones (like beef, lamb or pork) – Hard shells – Large amounts of liquid, grease, or oil – Large amounts of sugar, cake, or cookies – Large amounts of fibrous or starchy material (e.g. corn husks, potato peels) – Houseplants or flowers – Drugs or medicine – Compostable plastics, packaging – Take-out containers, paper plates – Moldy meat – Questionable leftovers (if they're more mold-than-food, it shouldn’t go in)

Charcoal refills are currently included with Mill essentials. Each refill lasts for up to a year, depending on use. So your kitchen never smells. Our activated charcoal filters utilize 2 million square meters of surface area to absorb any and all odors. Even better, they’re made from upcycled coconut shells, typically considered a waste item. We’ll send you an email when it’s time to replace your filter. Your Mill shouldn’t smell. If you’re noticing any smells and haven’t received a notification to replace it, you can go to Settings > Device > Charcoal filter to troubleshoot.

If you have Mill pickups enabled on your account, you have the option to send their Food Grounds to us whenever their bin gets full, in order to keep their kitchen scraps in the food system and out of the landfill. Prepaid return boxes, shipping fees, and scheduled pickups are all included in the Mill service plan. Based on our preliminary study, you can avoid about a half-ton of greenhouse gas emissions per year with a Mill service plan. Instead of filling the air with methane, your kitchen scraps are turned into food for chickens, going right back into the food system. Shipping We are partnering with USPS to ship Food Grounds because they’re already visiting almost every house, every day. And since Mill households will, on average, send just one box of Food Grounds every few weeks, USPS vehicles will have the capacity to manage the load. With this approach, every box of Food Grounds could be transported 15,000-20,000 miles (close to a trip around the world) before it could negate the benefits of keeping food out of landfills and avoiding methane emissions. Packaging For the Food Grounds packaging, we use a recyclable LDPE plastic slide-lock liner in a 100% recyclable cardboard box. Since we receive every box of Food Grounds at our feed facility, we’re able to inspect and sort the boxes for reusability and recycle the bags. We’ve partnered with a recycling facility to convert all of our liners into value added products, for example parking curb stops! We’re also actively exploring other sustainable packaging options. If you have any suggestions, please contact us. To learn more about the climate impact of an annual Mill service plan, please click here.

The Mill kitchen bin is manufactured at a LEED-certified facility in Guadalajara, Mexico. We prioritized manufacturing in North America to minimize the greenhouse gas emissions impact of shipping bins from the factory to the homes of our Mill customers.

Our manufacturer also requires their supply chain to commit to their Responsible Business Alliance Code of Conduct to ensure the health and safety of the employees at the facility.

We’ll be deliberate and thoughtful about our selection of potential farm partners, taking into account concerns about the environmental, welfare, and equity impacts of various production models.

We’ll share more about our progress later this year. If you have any suggestions, please contact us.

For the Mill packaging, we use 100% recyclable cardboard for the box and paper pulp for the interior. For the Food Grounds packaging, we use a recyclable LDPE plastic slide-lock liner in a 100% recyclable cardboard box. This solution offers Mill customers the most practical way to keep their Food Grounds and packaging out of landfills. You can read more about the climate impact here. Since we receive every box of Food Grounds at our feed facility, we’re able to inspect and sort the boxes for reusability and recycle the bags. We’ve partnered with a recycling facility to convert all of our liners into parking curb stops! We’re also actively exploring other sustainable packaging options. If you have any suggestions, please send them to us at mill.com/contact.

We consider conservation in every decision we make — from sourcing product materials to community outreach.

We’re internally tracking what we’re doing, what we consider, and how we’ll get better across each area of our business.

– Device production: building and delivering Mill kitchen bins for households. – Household participation: improving household kitchen experiences. – Service plan: improving Mill customer experiences. – Maintaining food pathways: enabling highest and best end uses for Food Grounds. – Overall: building Mill as a sustainable company.

We’re building an approach that covers: – What we do to stop waste. – How we prevent emissions. – How we help people.

This approach is embedded into our company onboarding program, our product development process, and our company-wide goals. We’re looking forward to sharing more about our progress. If you have any suggestions, please contact us.

We use a life-cycle assessment (LCA) to quantify the impact of an annual Mill service plan.

Prior to having data from households with Mill service plans, we prepared an externally reviewed Scoping LCA as an interim modeling effort. This is typically used to identify “hot spots” — areas of a process or business which are disproportionately impactful.

By publishing our initial estimates, we want to invite more people to help shape how we think and how we outsmart waste. To learn more about the climate impact of an annual Mill service plan, please click here.

  1. Choose the dollar amount you want to give and your preferred digital gift card design.
  2. Provide your name, email and payment information.
  3. After you complete your purchase, we’ll email you the gift card for you to forward to the lucky recipient.
  4. The recipient can redeem the gift card toward any Mill plan they’d like and any leftover amount will automatically rollover to future payments. We’re not able to provide refunds on gift cards.

If you want to gift Mill to someone in your household we’d recommend placing an order rather than purchasing a gift card. Mill bins are in high demand and by placing an order directly you’ll get on the list for the next available bin. If you’d prefer to give a gift card, feel free! Your recipient will get on the list for a bin once they redeem their gift card.

  1. Select your preferred Mill pricing plan.
  2. Provide your name & and email to create your account.
  3. Provide your shipping information.
  4. Paste your gift card code into the “Gift card and discount code” box during check out. Any leftover amount will automatically rollover to future payments.
  5. Get excited for your Mill and life without trashing food.

You’re welcome to regift to someone else who would love Mill or use it yourself. We’re not able to provide refunds on gift cards.

This will depend on when they redeem their gift card and order their bin. You can find the current shipping availability here.

Yup! For now, the recipient will need to reach out to our support team who can help apply the gift card to the existing account so it applies to future payments

Not yet, but hopefully soon! For now, you can purchase multiple cards separately or reach out to our team at support@mill.com to purchase more than 10 gift cards.

You can start the cancellation process through the account portal on our website (click “Update plan” and then “Cancel service plan”).

Our support team will reach out to you once you start the cancellation process to help you return the bin and complete cancellation. We’ll email you instructions on how to prepare the bin for return, and send a box to pack up the Mill kitchen bin and a prepaid return label to the address connected to your account. If these should be sent to a different address, please let us know right away.

Once you’ve packed up the bin, contact Mill Support to schedule a FedEx pickup or drop it off at FedEx. You must return the bin within 30 days of your current billing period ending. We’ll send you an email confirming your plan has been canceled once your bin has been returned!

If you do not return the bin in your possession, your plan will remain active and you will continue to be charged until you return the bin. Please contact our support team if for any reason you are unable to return a bin.

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