St. Louis Composting Inc., operator of the largest composting facility in Missouri, has launched a commercial food waste and organics composting program. The program is fed by material from Washington University, Frito-Lay, the National Guard, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and the Missouri Botanical Garden. The Valley Park, Mo.-based composter says the program is the first of its kind in the St. Louis region.
“Just as environmentally conscious St. Louis restaurants have embraced menu selections that emphasize locally grown produce and meats, we are committed to extending the process full circle,” said Patrick Geraty, president of St. Louis Composting, in a press release. “By composting spent waste from restaurants, grocery stores and businesses, and then supplying the compost to local farmers to incorporate into their fields to improve their soil, we help increase produce yields. The locally grown produce finds its way back to the restaurants and onto diners’ plates – helping us to take the process even farther than from garden to table and back again. We hope to process even more organic and food waste in the future as we recruit more businesses that generate volumes of food waste.”
Currently, the firm is composting more than 100 tons of out-of-date food and food processing by-products per week.
“Since partnering with St. Louis Composting, we have diverted more than 10,000 pounds of food waste from area landfills,” said Jonathan Harley, facilities operation manager at Frito-Lay, in a press release. “Composting, along with other recycling programs, has helped reduce Frito-Lay’s landfill waste from 60 percent in 2009 to about two percent landfill waste by year end 2010."