The Med Center is Now a Composting Drop-Off Location

By Melanie Stewart

Food waste happens at all parts of the supply chain: post-harvest waste, items lost in transportation, grocery stores throwing out food, and consumers (us) throwing out food before it’s prepped or what we don’t eat.  A major culprit in food waste is confusion regarding what’s OK to eat—“sell by”, “best by”, “use by” and “expires on” dates are not regulated by the FDA and can mean something different, depending on the manufacturer.  Generally, those dates  are conservative, and when the food is at its peak, not when it goes bad.  So how much food is wasted?  According to the National Resources Defense Council:

  • 40% of the food in the U.S. is never eaten
    • That’s 300lbs per person, per year
  • The average family of 4 throws away $1800 worth of food each year
    • At a total cost of $218 Billion
    • While 1 in 8 Americans don’t have enough food to eat (pre-pandemic numbers)
  • 90% of us throw food away too soon
  • In the landfill, food waste produces harmful methane, accounting for ~11% of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions

A few simple steps can help you save money and prevent food waste.  Store food properly and then consider these actions—your wallet and the planet will thank you.

Prevention of waste is always best, but when mistakes happen, there’s composting.  You can compost many food items at home, and we have a 3 part article series and a webinar to get you started.

If composting isn’t for you, you don’t have a yard, or you want to compost items that can only be composted commercially (pizza boxes, meat/dairy products, dog poo, etc.) there’s a relatively new option called the Compost Club.  Individuals pay (discounts for students/teachers/seniors/veterans/active military) to have the ability to drop off materials to be composted. 

We are proud to be one of the drop off locations for Compost Club participants.  Compost can be easily dropped off on your way in to work or school in one of the green totes located on the east end of lot 15 (by SLC and MCPH).  Numerous other locations are available across the metro area.  

Not only do you prevent methane, compost is nutrient-rich and can help store carbon—a win-win!  As part of the membership you get compost back to use in your garden, or you can donate it to a community garden.


One Comment on “The Med Center is Now a Composting Drop-Off Location”

  1. Thank you! My attempt at composting in my yard is very limited but I want to continue! There are no collection sites near me.

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