Food waste is getting a lot of attention and so are the many ways to cut waste for specific kinds of foods, including coffee waste. What does the future hold for composting or food waste recycling in the United States? Here are four predictions.
1. A change in how governments focus on organics
In a recent Waste 360 interview, the U.S. Composting Council’s new executive director Frank Franciosi pointed out that, “On a national level [the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] EPA’s and [the U.S. Department of Agriculture] USDA’s ‘Food Waste Challenge’ has put this issue on the national map, with the goal of 50-percent reduction by 2030. Many states will follow or already have in place programs and initiatives of their own. I see the states as educators to the consumers and the generators by providing outreach. Some states have gone further with landfill bans on large-volume generators of organics.”
2. New approaches to separation and collection
Franciosi sees more focus on education on how to implement food waste recycling programs and their benefits. He also expects more attention to addressing the costs related to the separation, collection, and hauling of organics, including food waste and creating incentives. This could help tackle the issue of contamination of organic waste streams and compost by non-compostable materials.
3. Consumer education and increased use of products certified compostable by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI)
Consumer education will grow from the conversation around food waste as people pay more attention to products that are seriously helping to address the issue. This will make the certification program of the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) and others more visible and important to consumers. That certification process has already been critical to the success of PῧrPod100™ with coffee brands and composting operators.
4. Expanding composting infrastructure
Franciosi underlines that “expanding composting infrastructure in a major hurdle to get over.” Today, some regions of the US are well-served by access to composting facilities while others have very little coverage. USCC is working with a range of stakeholders in business, government and key associations and institutions to analyze what needs to happen to expand composting infrastructure and how to help drive action on the challenges that currently face composting.
The full Frank Franciosi interview is at http://waste360.com/composting/what-new-composting-council-chief-has-mind