The New York City Department of Sanitation’s Foundation for New York’s Strongest has launched a Microgrant Program for city businesses looking to address food waste in their operations. The grants available are worth up to $15,000 and aim to help New York City business prevent, recycle or recover their food waste.
“Taking even small steps toward food waste reduction, surplus food recovery and organics diversion can have a big impact on the way we all view food and manage waste,” said Elizabeth Balkan, executive director for the Foundation for New York’s Strongest, in a statement. “Through the Microgrant Program, the Foundation for New York’s Strongest is committed to supporting NYC businesses who exemplify environmental and social leadership, and we eagerly await the opportunity to work with our grantees to continue making progress in the fight against food waste.”
The foundation’s Microgrant Program will provide support for city businesses taking action to address food waste. Proposals will be accepted from businesses that are working toward food waste prevention, recovery and recycling solutions already, or wish to get started. The foundation will award grants of up to $2,000, plus technical advisory and other goods and services, to businesses that can demonstrate a need for support and a viable implementation plan. Businesses may partner together to submit companion applications which, in total, may receive up to $5,000.
“We need all hands on deck to achieve zero waste to landfills by 2030, including our commercial partners, big and small,” said Kathryn Garcia, commissioner of NYC Department of Sanitation, in a statement. “The NYC Food Waste Fair was proof of the significant interest our smaller businesses have in reducing food waste in their operations, and the Microgrant Program picks up where it left off, with the Foundation for New York’s Strongest providing direct support to businesses answering the call to action.”
Through a technical advisory partnership with New York State, as well as matching funds and donations of supplies, equipment and in kind support, the foundation will be able to offer grant packages valued at up to $15,000 per grantee.
The Microgrant Program is the first of its kind for the foundation, exemplifying the organization’s goal to develop and recognize diverse business types demonstrating best management practices to the larger NYC business community. The Microgrant Program is a result of the successful NYC Food Waste Fair, an educational event held earlier this year by the foundation with a focus on helping city businesses prevent, recycle or recover the more than 650,000 tons of food waste that they throw away each year.