LOS ANGELES — Ever since the gardening boom during the pandemic, and now especially since California’s composting law went into effect in January, Los Angeles residents are suddenly on the hunt for composting worms.

Will Hatanaka, 7, is a business owner trying to meet the demand. His expertise is in worms.

Will and his 8-year-old sister Alyssa both own and operate a company called Will’s Worms.

“We sell composting worms, which are different from earth worms, because they eat food scraps and earth worms don’t,” Will clarifies. 

There’s a demand for their business because there is a real shortage of composting worms. More people began gardening and composting during the pandemic, while a heat wave across the southwest killed millions of worms at the two biggest commercial factories. But perhaps most pressing is the new California compost law, which prohibits food waste from ending up in landfills. The law is driving up demand for the worms.

“We’ve definitely seen an increase in business, and not only an increase in business but an interest in composting.”

It is a good sign for LA, because soil health is a major component of fighting climate change. For more information on Will's Worms, visit www.willsworms.com