South Windsor Looking To Remove Food Waste From Trash Stream

Hartford Courant – Courant Community || October 20, 2017

In Connecticut, 22 percent, or two trillion tons, of all waste consists of food.

That statistic has the town thinking of ways to remove food from the waste stream like it recycles bottles, cans and paper. The state is requiring towns recycle 60 percent of all organic waste by 2024. In Southington, the first two food recycling plants in the state have opened and are creating electricity that powers homes and compost that fertilizes farms.

The plants — Quantum Biopower and Turning Earth LLC — takes tons of food waste from across the state turning it into gas that creates electricity and organic compost.

South Windsor Town Manager Matthew B. Galligan and some members of the council would like to see the town become proactive in food recycling and look at ways to take waste from schools, restaurants and large companies.

The town is hoping to create a committee to look into the food recycling and, possibly, helping to locate a plant in town.

Galligan suggested working with other towns in educating the public about food-waste recycling and determining ways residents can use a bin to collect the waste.

“It’s a logistical problem for 9,000 homes, but it’s not insurmountable,” he said. “It’s an educational process. It gets rid of food waste and produces energy and creates less [truck] emissions.”

Councilman M. Saud Anwar said it is the town’s “collective responsibility” to recycle as much as it can.

“It will be worthwhile to have a temporary committee to start looking into the specifics and get the right people around the room and try to see where our community stands. This is an issue where we want to create a sustainable society and sustainable community,” he said.

Councilman William Carroll suggested that the town’s energy committee look into food recycling.

“It’s a win-win,” he said. “But there are a lot of moving parts. It’s very complicated. But it’s a good program and makes sense.”

Councilwoman Liz Pendleton said she composts food for her gardens and chickens.

“We have to protect our earth. We have to protect landfills. We have to protect burning of our trash,” she said. “I think South Windsor should go super green.”