EcoScraps Turns Trash Into Treasure One Rotten Tomato At A Time

EcoScraps Founders Dumpster Dive For Food Waste

Today is Blog Action Day 2012. On this day this year, bloggers around the world will write about a single, important, global topic: “The Power Of We.” It’s all about how each of us can make a difference in the world individually and collectively.

I’m eager to see what other writers share. What will inspire us? What will make us do something different? How can we help change the world in our own tiny way?

To honor this day on behalf of the EatDrinkBetter crew, I’d like to share the story of a young company with lofty ideas about repurposing the huge amount of food waste we generate.

Meet Dan Blake and Craig Martineau, co-founders of EcoScraps.

I had the opportunity to talk with Dan about EcoScraps’ beginnings and its future.

I learned that the company began when Dan treated himself to an all-you-can-eat buffet to celebrate a semester’s end. “All you can eat” is relative, and he found himself full after one plate — with quite a bit of food still uneaten. He looked around and noticed he had company. He — like many others — was throwing away something he had paid for a mere 30 minutes earlier. That’s not surprising or unusual: Studies show the average American wastes 40% of the food they purchase.

Dan and Craig did a bit of research. They learned about composting and decided to see if they could “reorganize the waste stream.” They realized garbage is the only thing you pay people to take away from you: That restaurant paid someone to haul leftover food to the landfill where it would rot. What if that food waste made its way into a compost pile that later made its way into someone’s garden or farm?

There’s gold in them there hills of food waste.

EcoScraps takes post-consumer waste from companies like Costco, grocery stores, prisons, and other food providers — any organization that goes through large volumes of food. They process the waste into 100% certified organic compost and potting mixes. No chemicals, no poop, high in nutrients. The company seeks to reduce food waste and improve the quality of our soil — acknowledging along the way that organic materials have to be competitive in the marketplace to go mainstream. They hope to play a part in making that happen. They believe “you shouldn’t have to pay more for green products.” Overpricing is a huge hindrance to green and organic products being accessible.

You can find EcoScraps products at Home Depots and Costcos in the western US. You can also order from Home Depot online.

What’s to love about EcoScraps?

Young people with entrepreneurial ideas are staring the food waste problem in the face and doing what they can to fix it. They give us choices. Important choices. We, as a community of consumers, can support them and others who do their best to make the world a better place.

That’s the real Power Of We.

Image Credit: EcoScraps Pinterest Page

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