The “Williamstown Composts!” pilot program in Williamstown, launched for residents in 2018, has now expanded to include businesses. This local effort is supported in part by Community Climate Fund (CCF), which is administered by the Center for EcoTechnology (CET) and receives funding from Williams College. In the expanded pilot program, approved businesses receive funding to cover six months of pickup service for composting their organics and compostable packaging.
RecyclingWorks in Massachusetts (RecyclingWorks), funded by Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and administered by CET, partnered with “Williamstown Composts!” to conduct site visits to assist businesses with the implementation of their new food scraps collection program. RecyclingWorks offered free technical assistance to businesses to improve or expand their efforts in prevention, donation, and recycling of food waste. So far, several businesses have joined the pilot and are moving forward with organics collection for composting.
Mezze Bistro & Bar, a farm-to-table restaurant in Williamstown, has been successfully sending organics for composting since January 2023. After a site visit, RecyclingWorks provided signage to help prevent contamination and train employees on source separation and collection. Blue Mango, a Thai and Japanese restaurant, is diverting pre-consumer scraps such as trim waste. Images, a movie theater, took creative steps to reduce waste by diverting popcorn kernels and is evaluating compostable packaging.
So far, five businesses will each have one 64-gal tote picked up weekly by Casella or Second Chance Composting, resulting in diversion of approximately 6.75 tons food scraps over a 6-month period. Williamstown Composts hopes the value of the program will make it easy for businesses to continue paying for collection after the 6-month funding ends.
This model serves as an excellent example of how local environmental groups can engage with RecyclingWorks to increase food scraps diversion in cities and towns throughout Massachusetts.
RecyclingWorks in Massachusetts assists businesses and institutions with recycling and diverting waste food from disposal. To speak to a recycling expert on how you can begin a food waste diversion initiative, call our hotline: (888) 254-5525 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.