Monty is made up of the most amazing, committed, coolest composters and we would be nowhere without their incredible support. As such, we thought that it would be super cool to feature a few of them so you can meet the community that's transforming composting.
First up is Louise, one of our first ever users who has been managing her compost with Monty for months.
As an avid gardener, Louise has an in-depth understanding of how compost can fit into any household and important tips to keep in mind. Throughout her journey with us, she has been able to share those tips, tricks and other feedback, helping make Monty easier to use for everyone who is to follow.
In order to better understand and sum up Louise's insights, we held an interview with the compost queen herself. Check out the transcript here between Louise and our Monty team member Phoebe.
Phoebe: Hi everyone! I’m Phoebe from Monty Compost Co and I’m here today with one of our most committed composters, Louise. Louise has been using Monty for months now and we’ve just upgraded her first Monty to our latest version. As such, we thought it would be a good time to learn a little more about her experiences, as well as her insights on compost, gardening and sustainability. So, let’s get started!
I think everyone would love to learn just a little more about you Louise, particularly around your composting journey. Say, how long have you been doing it for?
Louise: Oh years, around fifteen years.
Phoebe: And could you tell us more about your current compost for the listeners?
Louise: My compost system here consists of 4 bays, 3 tumbler’s, 6 chickens and a dog.
Phoebe: Now to the why - everyone composts for different reasons, whether it’s environmental, as a hobby or to get the nutrient-rich end product - what’s your reason?
Firstly for the environment then for the nutrient-rich end product, not only do I love it but my garden loves it too!
Phoebe: So we both know how incredible compost is but unfortunately a lot of other people don’t. Worldwide we’re sending billions of tonnes of organic waste to landfill every year instead of composting it. Do you have any suspicions why people don’t all compost?
Louise: Probably because it takes a bit of time and effort, people are busy.
Phoebe: What we’ve found is three common reasons why people don’t compost - they’re confused about how to do it right, it’s too time-consuming and they have negative attitudes towards it, like that it’s smelly or gross or boring. What are your thoughts on those three reasons?
Louise: It’s not smelling, gross or boring at all I love getting in there and finding all the grubs and worms and lizards in my compost bay. It can be very time consuming but once you have the hang of it with your own system in place, it takes no time at all.
I have family two doors down and they bring their waste here. They put it in my rolling bins where I feed my chickens the maggots that come from the bin, near there I also have three rolling compost bins.
I have 6
Phoebe: Have you ever experienced these issues yourself?
Louise: The rolling composting for me can be a bit smelly and can get maggoty but it’s put in the chicken coop and the chickens love the maggots. that is all in the chicken coop so they can.
Phoebe: So we’ve spoken a lot about composting in general but now let’s get to the tech. Monty has been working for a while now with Louise to help monitor and connect with her compost. She was one of our first-ever users and she’s been the most active, giving us amazing insights into her experience using Monty.
Being our first release we’ve faced a few challenges but Louise has been incredibly supportive and helped us overcome them, as well as providing feedback to make Monty even better for future users. Going back to the beginning, what exactly made you want to get your own Monty and join our compost community?
Louise: I was already composting vigorously and i heard about it on the ABC and thought ‘what a great initiative’ and Monty has helped me to balance the compost so I can compost better and faster.
Phoebe: There is a lot of new tech coming out in all sorts of areas. Do you have any other gadgets in your garden or would you think about getting one?
Louise: No, just Monty and a tap timer.
Phoebe: Monty is made up of two parts - the Monty Monitor, which tracks the data coming off your compost and Monty Mobile which connects you with it.
Starting with the Monitor, we experienced a few issues with your first version - who would have thought that electronics don’t like water! We’ve just upgraded you to our latest version which has full sealing and wireless charging to prevent this but when you had your first version and it was functioning well, were there any major thoughts you had about it? For example the design, the feel of it, the usage.
Louise: It’s really easy to use in the bay and in the compost and you can just forget about it. It’s like having a game, so I can look at my composting achievements.
Phoebe: Apart from the obvious issues I mentioned, if you could get us to improve it in any way, what would you recommend?
Louise: I have multiple bays I have to monitor, I would like to be able to say that this has gone into bay number 1 and then I can continue to see how long my other bays take to cook before I get to use them.
Phoebe: On the good side, what was your favourite part about the monitor?
Louise: The ease of using it.
Phoebe: Jumping on over to the Monty Mobile, the current one available is our MVP or minimum viable product. As such, over the past several months, we’ve been making continuous changes, updates and new features all based on user feedback, a significant amount coming from you, which we’ve appreciated so much!
Monty Mobile has a lot going on in it so let’s get down to it. Starting off easy - what’s your favourite thing about it?
Louise: It is like playing a game and very interactive.
Phoebe: And what’s your least favourite thing about it?
Louise: Honestly the most terrible thing is that sometimes it wants me to put my password back in.
Phoebe: I use lots of different apps - Instagram, Facebook, etc. How does Monty Mobile compare to other apps that you use?
Louise: I use instagram a lot but it’s a much different user experience, there are no ads or anything.
Phoebe: Our app has feedback forms throughout where you can send through your thoughts and they get sent directly to the Monty team. You’re definitely the most regular but it’s helped us improve the app’s user experience massively. Do you have any feedback right now?
Louise: No, whenever I have any sort of feedback, I’m always getting an answer so quickly, usually Ash. It’s very efficient.
Phoebe: As a company, our mission is to recycle all food and organic waste back into our soil and we’ve made the Monty Monitor and Mobile system to help do that. Our first stop is people like you with compost in their backyard and it means the world that you’ve supported us at this super early stage.
What are your thoughts on our mission, it’s important and ways we could help bring people on board?
Louise: It’s incredibly important to the earth and feeding our soil. We’ve always done it, my father is Italian and we had a huge veggie garden in our garden growing up. My dad used to reuse things and nothing went into the bin and it’s the way we were brought up.
I became more aware of the environmental impact as I got older and just always reminded myself ‘not to waste anything and make sure to even turn off the lights and not only are we wasting money but there is a huge environmental impact especially in manufacturing’. I make sure all 3 of my children compost.
Phoebe: What would you say to convince someone who is unsure to start composting?
Louise: Start small, you can start with a small area and throw your organic waste on it, and it’ll break down and go back into the earth. It’s so much fun when you really get into it and you feel like you’re making a difference to our earth.
Phoebe: What would you say to convince someone to get involved with Monty’s mission?
Louise: It’s easy, fun and informative if you’re into composting, Monty is such a great help.
Phoebe: Thank you so much for your time today Louise and for being such an amazing part of our compost community.
We couldn't have said it better ourselves. If you want to be part of Monty's compost community, make sure you've subscribed to our mailing list and are following our socials.