At Mountain Burger, we are proud to be participants in a composting program for our food scraps. Our food scraps are composted at the Knott Landfill Recycling Facility. By composting, we are not only reducing our waste and promoting sustainability but also offering a benefit to our customers. You can enjoy a meal knowing that you are supporting a business that is dedicated to sustainability and the environment.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), food waste is the largest component of municipal solid waste in the United States, accounting for over 21% of the total waste stream. By actively participating in a composting program, we are able to significantly reduce the amount of waste we produce and do our part in addressing this issue.
The benefits of composting go beyond waste reduction. Composting organic materials, such as food scraps, help convert those materials into nutrient-rich soil. This soil can improve the health of gardens and other green spaces in the community, reducing the need for synthetic fertilizers.
At Deschutes Recycling, the compost is tested by a US Composting Council-approved lab to ensure quality. They have multiple products available for delivery and self-haul, so make sure to close the loop and buy locally-produced soil for your next project!
Composting food scraps can also help to reduce carbon emissions. When organic materials, such as food scraps, break down in landfills, they release methane, a greenhouse gas that is more than 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. By actively participating in a composting program and diverting food scraps from landfills, we are making a conscious effort to reduce the amount of methane released into the atmosphere and decrease our carbon footprint.
How big of an impact are we making?
In an effort to ensure food scraps are composted, the kitchen has added more indoor compost bins on the line in the kitchen and another 64-gallon toter that is picked up each week and taken to the local compost facility.
The EPA’s volume-to-weight conversion for food waste for a 64-gallon toter is 150 pounds. For Mountain Burger’s two 64-gallon toters, that’s 300 lbs of food waste per week, assuming they are both completely full. Using the EPA’s food waste emissions factors (0.58 Metric Tons of CO2e/Short Ton Material for the landfill and 0.15 Metric Tons of CO2e/Short Ton Material for the compost), one week's worth of food waste produces 23 kg of CO2e when it is composted as opposed to 87 kg of CO2e when landfilled. This reduces emissions by 74.1 percent! The averted CO2e emissions for one week (64 kg) are equal to driving 159 miles in a gasoline-powered car. That’s like driving to Portland!
Our participation in a composting program is a simple yet effective way for us to reduce our environmental impact and promote sustainability. By actively participating in this program, we are doing our part in protecting the environment while also offering a unique benefit for our customers.
Not sure what to compost? Check out the Environmental Center’s Rethink Waste Guide!
This week’s blog post was brought to you in part by ChatGPT.