As landfills become increasingly overburdened, there is a growing movement in America to prevent large amounts of food waste generated by commercial operations from being disposed at these sites. States and cities across the country are passing legislation to place limits on the amounts and ways in which commercial organic waste is disposed.
Michael Mintz, CEO of Waste Cost Solutions, says that businesses that generate large amounts of food waste should take note and prepare now for possible regulation in their own communities.
“There is increasing regulation across the U.S. with respect to managing organic waste more efficiently. For example, major cities like New York and San Francisco are targeting large commercial entities and limiting the amount of food waste they can deposit in local landfills. Vermont and Connecticut have already passed laws. Massachusetts got on board last year with the most stringent legislation so far — there, any business that generates a ton or more of food waste a week must find ways to donate it or keep it out of landfills,” he states. “Now is the time for restaurants, schools, healthcare facilities and other businesses with food service operations to demonstrate their commitment to environmental responsibility by implementing strategies for recycling their organic waste. By doing so, they’ll be ahead of the curve and prepared in the event their cities and/or states pass this type of legislation.”
Today, organic waste is on a par with what yard waste was to municipalities several years ago. Governments on every level are seeking ways to prevent commercial food waste from clogging area landfills and to find better uses for it, including the use of aerobic or anaerobic digestion equipment to break down the waste and recycle it into either an energy source or a compost by-product.
At the very least, restaurants and other businesses that generate large quantities of food waste will need to take a hard look at their current recycling practices and make improvements or implement a plan if there isn’t one already in place, according to Mintz.
“In the future, trash haulers are going to be penalized if you’re disposing of recyclable items,” he explains. “It makes sense to avoid chargebacks and seek solutions today. Prepare for the future by simply doing the right thing — recycle your food waste, practice source separation, and consider composting or anaerobic or aerobic digesting.”
Find out how your business can take steps to reduce and recycle food waste effectively. Waste Cost Solutions can design a customized sustainability plan for your company or improve your existing recycling program: call 1.800.509.5399 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.