Salish Soils welcomes your questions about our products and business.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens to biosolids when they come to Salish Soils?

There is some misinformation in the community about where the Sechelt biosolids end up in our products. In fact, ZERO biosolids material is in ANY of our gardening products. Even though the biosolids have been treated twice – once at the Sechelt plant, and a second time at Salish Soils, where it is cooked at 75 degrees celsius for 60 days – and thus are completely sterilized, we do not put this into our gardening mixes. Only soil for landscaping products bound for non-edible gardens contains this neutralized ingredient.

Our garden soils are 100% free of any biosolids materials.

Why does Salish Soils process biosolids? Couldn't those go somewhere else?

At Salish Soils we are committed to innovation, food sustainability, and taking 100% responsibility for the waste we each create in our day to day lives on the Sunshine Coast. The time is past for massive landfills, untreated effluent, or buck-passing on issues like biosolids. Not only do we see it as morally and ethically responsible to run biosolids through our high-performing ‘cooker’, the Gore Containment System, we think it’s a way to innovate. The power we’re able to generate from the cooking process can be fed back into running a greenhouse, power our operations, and long-term perhaps even feed back into the power grid.

It’s also important to note that many of the countries from which we accept produce for our grocery stores on the Coast are shipping products which have likely been sprayed with unpurified nutrient products, some of which can contain unneutralized biosolids. How many of us really know what’s in the imported food we buy?

At Salish Soils our goal is to increase self-sufficiency on the Sunshine Coast, contribute to growing our agricultural base for greater food security, and use formerly out-of-sight-out-of-mind waste streams we ourselves create in innovative, transformational ways – all while exceeding British Columbia guidelines for quality and safety in our products.

How long is the material cooked for and at what temperature?

Our Gore Cover System technology means all of our soils and landscaping products are cooked for a period of 60 days at 75 degrees celsius (167 degrees fahrenheit). This exceeds, by a factor of 3, the legal requirements for composted materials in British Columbia.

Where else are Gore Cover systems in place?

The Gore Cover is used in over 150 composting and organic waste treatment plants, with a throughput amounting to more than 2 million tons a year!

This technology is approved for all latest regulations, including in rigorously controlled regions such as California, UK and Germany.

What makes the Gore Cover so different from other technologies?

The GORE membrane based on ePTFE (expanded Polytetrafloroethylene) ehances the rotting process, while still being permeable to vapor, which manages moisture content and retains bioaerosols at the same time. Biological washing and filtration is not necessary, protecting our local water levels and greatly reducing costs.

With a pore size of only 0.2µ it is also a great barrier against spores and microbes. Tests have proved that the system reduces the output of bio-aerosols by >99%. As required by law pathogenic microbes are safely destroyed by the heat generated during the treatment process. With its low emissions (i.e. VOCs, ammonia, dust), GORE® Cover technology offers a cost-efficient way of complying with all applicable legal regulations.

What kind of wastes can the Gore Cover manage?

  • Yard waste
  • Food waste
  • Green cuttings
  • Animal digestate
  • Source-separated organics
  • Manure
  • Catering waste
  • Paper sludge
  • Fish waste
  • Biosolids

Almost any organic waste created can be handled by this system.


Still have questions? Call us at 604-885-5383 or
email us at salishsoils@gmail.com