Eating fresh food is large part of living an environmentally friendly lifestyle, but when grocery stores and restaurants sell those fresh foods in mass quantities, food waste is inevitable.
A New Jersey company has developed a system to decompose food waste en mass before it ever hits the landfill, converting waste to water and saving money on disposal for the companies that use the system.
The Food2Water Liquefier is a four-step system that starts with organic food waste like pasta, meat, vegetables and bread and uses patented microorganisms to break down the waste and drain it of its water within 24 hours. The discharged, liquefied food waste can be discharged down the drain, saving businesses 40 to 70 percent on monthly waste hauling costs, Food2Water claims.
“When Clients consider that they are effectively paying twice for the food they serve-once to purchase it and again to haul it away-reducing food waste becomes a no-brainer for helping the planet and increasing profits,” the company says on its website. “The return on investment is quick and the impact on the environment is huge.”
While food waste decomposes on its own, in 2010, 34 million tons of food waste found its way to landfills, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. With it came unharnessed methane, the greenhouse gas released from decomposing food that has 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide, according to the EPA.
Food2Water isn’t the first system to utilize microbes to break down food waste: last year, we highlighted a similar startup based in Singapore and Bokashi, a small-scale home system suited for composting in small spaces, is gaining traction worldwide.
The Food2Water system is completely enclosed, which virtually eliminates the foul odor associated with traditional dumpsters and protects from rodent and insect infestation, the company suggests, which have attracted partnerships with BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse, Walmart, the City of Newark, New Jersey, the New Jersey Hospital Association and more.
Currently, the discharged water can only be disposed of down the drain, but the company is also working on a new technology that would convert the expelled water into drinkable water fit for human consumption.