In 2018, the City of Buffalo rolled out a food scrap composting program called Scrap It! that turned out to be a big win for those hoping to alleviate food waste. Now, the City has teamed up with the Elmwood Village Association to introduce the first permanent food waste drop off station at the corner of Elmwood and Bidwell, in front of Caffé Aroma.
Mayor Brown joined councilmember Feroleto and Susan Attridge (director of Refuse and Recycling) and other composting proponents, to introduce the new bins that also feature trash and recycling receptacles. An official from Big Brothers Big Sisters was also onhand to talk about a parallel promotion that is featured on the bin.
In the United States, food waste is estimated at between 30-40 percent of the food supply.
This pilot program is just the start when it comes to food upcycling. Feroleto says that his office has been fielding phone calls asking for this type of amenity to be introduced in various neighborhoods.
According to Attridge, the types of foods that can be scrapped are veggies and fruit scraps, coffee grounds (filter is OK), tea bags, nuts, and egg shells. The following are NOT acceptable to compost: meat and fish, greasy and oily foods, dairy, animal waste, coconuts, compostable plastics, and yard debris/houseplants.
Buffalo is working towards a goal of recycling 34% of its waste. This new composting measure will not only keep food scraps out of landfills, the compost derived from the program will be used at community parks and gardens thanks to the efforts of contractor Natural Upcycling. Now, it’s time to start upcycling your food scraps, Buffalo.
The City is currently offering free Scrap It! buckets for anyone that calls 716-851-5014.