Anaerobic digestion with food waste is an emerging technology in the United States. Food waste is broken down into what is called a bio-gas and can be used to provide power. Several studies have been prepared that evaluate the feasibility of anaerobic digestion in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. To read more about anaerobic digestion and feedstocks
Food rescue involves collecting edible food from donor businesses and delivering it to non-profit agencies serving people in need. Food donation includes prepared and perishable food collected by food rescue programs and may include entrees, sandwiches, deli foods, salads and perishable unprepared and packaged food collected for use in non-profit agency kitchens. Businesses that donate food are protected from liability by the federal Good Samaritan Law and may benefit by tax deductions. Learn more about food rescue
Food Waste Composting for Businesses
Food waste from businesses and large events like weddings, family reunions, birthday parties and graduations can be composted. Depending on its quality, compost can be used in many applications such as in agriculture, horticulture, landscaping and erosion control.
Food Waste Composting at Home
Food waste accounts for 11 percent of the garbage thrown away in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Composting is one of the easiest ways you can reduce the amount thrown away. Composting turns certain food scraps into a valuable soil nutrient for lawns and gardens. Contact your city about rules and restrictions. Learn how to compost at home RethinkRecycling | Minnesota Pollution Control Agency | Printable Guide | University of Minnesota Extension | Your City
Food to AnimalsFarmers use food waste to feed their livestock. Many businesses in Ramsey and Washington counties find that separating food waste from garbage and managing it through livestock feeding means big savings.
Businesses Save Money - English (pdf) | Spanish (pdf) | Barthold Recycling & Roll-Off Services Photos (pdf)
Manufacturing Dry Livestock Feed
Food waste products such as cookies, dough, cereal, pasta, crackers, bread, bagels and chips are used to manufacture dry livestock feed.
Meat, fat, bones and grease are collected and transported to rendering companies where it is processed into livestock feed ingredients such as bone meal, tallow and lard. Rendering plants process wastes from locker plants, butcher shops and grocery stores. Cooking oil and grease are also collected from food establishments.
Estimate Your Savings when Considering Livestock Feeding
Cost compare - compactor (pdf) | dumpster (pdf)
School Food Waste Recycling
Many schools recycle food waste. Local livestock farmers pick up leftover food and beverage waste and process it to be safe for livestock to eat.
Boxes, Bottles and Banana Peels
Ramsey County partnered with Parkview Center School (PCS) in Roseville roll out an enhanced recycling program for food waste, paper, bottles and cans. After implementing the program, PCS saw a cost savings as a result of reducing its number of trash pickups and increasing its number of recycling pickups. The video "Boxes, Bottles and Banana Peels" is a fun introduction to school recycling and has helpful tips for starting a program at your school.
Boxes, Bottles and Banana Peels | request a DVD