Food for… Recycling!

This week, we read enthusiastically about Barrington, Illinois’ plan to start a food recycling program. As one local resident said in an article in the Chicago Tribune, “Food waste should be looked at as a positive resource that can enrich our soils, not as a landfill material.” Barrington residents will be able to dump food and landscaping waste into designated bins for curbside pickup, and a local contractor will haul the waste away to be composted.

If you garden, then the idea of composting may already sound exciting to you, since compost is like superfood for plants. But learning to compost could be important for the planet too. Mary Allen, from the Solid Waste Agency of North Cook County, told the Chicago Tribune that according to some experts, food left to rot in landfills may generate methane gas 23 times more harmful to the environment than carbon dioxide.

We were curious about other food scrap recycling projects in Illinois. It turns out that there are many Illinois institutions, businesses, and residents to congratulate for participating. The Illinois Food Scrap Coalition (IFSC) is dedicated to expanding the availability of food recycling programs across the state. IFSC has identified numerous businesses, institutions, and restaurants that recycle their food waste. You can find a list here.

Illinoisans never fail to impress with innovative ways they are pitching in to help our environment. We’re pretty proud of our state. Way to go, Illinois!