FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 1, 2020
Contact: Brian Pugh
Waste Reduction Coordinator
Recycling & Trash Collection
City of Fayetteville Awarded Grant for Mobile Food-Waste Collection and Education Program
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.—The City of Fayetteville’s Recycling and Trash Collection Division has been awarded a $73,870 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Compost and Food Waste Reduction (CCFWR) pilot project grant to help pilot a new Mobile Food-Waste Collection unit and Composting Education Program. The program is designed to help encourage resident participation in the food-waste composting program, educate the public about the importance of composting, and reduce the amount of organic material that is deposited in the City’s landfill.
The grant, along with matching funds from the City and the Boston Mountain Solid Waste District, will provide funding to create a Mobile Food-Waste Recovery trailer, which will be parked at the Downtown Square during Fayetteville’s Farmers Markets to collect compostable food-waste from residents. The grant will also fund a Compost Educator position to facilitate the program and provide educational programming, both at the Farmers Market during collection and at special events and for local schools, civic organizations, and other institutions.
The program will provide participating residents with 3.5-gallon food-waste containers that can be sealed and kept within the home. Residents will then bring their containers with them when shopping at the Farmers Market or attending other Fayetteville events to drop their food waste into larger containers on the Food Waste Recovery Trailer. The food waste will then be delivered to the Fayetteville Compost Facility, where it will be mixed with yard-waste to produce nutrient-rich compost for purchase by residents. The City will begin development of the program this fall and plans to begin accepting food-waste at the Mobile Food-Waste Recovery Trailer two days a week in the spring of 2021.
“Many people are not aware that organic material like food that goes into our landfill contributes to the production of methane gas, a greenhouse gas that contributes significantly to global climate change,” said Environmental Director Peter Nierengarten. “As a community, we can help reduce the amount of methane we produce by working together to get food waste and other organic material out of our garbage bins and into productive compost programs.”
Fayetteville’s Food Waste Composting Program
Since its inception in early 2017 the City’s Food Waste Compost Program has been constantly expanding and increasing the tonnage of organics processed from commercial and institutional accounts. In the last four years, the City has collected and processed 987 tons of food waste. The following yearly totals illustrate the growth of this program over the last few years:
- 2017 – 37.23 tons.
- 2018 – 132.49 tons.
- 2019 – 528.47 tons.
The Recycling and Trash Division has set a goal to reach a 40% landfill diversion rate by the year 2027, and the high percentage of organic food waste (18%) currently being sent to the landfill identifies the recovery of organics from the City’s waste stream as the next important expansion of the City’s recycling and recovery programs.
- To increase organics composting education and outreach efforts in the community through hands-on, in-person discussions, outreach seminars and workshops, social media campaigns, print materials, and events.
- To increase the tonnage of residential food waste in the composting program by making it simpler for residents to save food waste.
The City offers both food waste compost for $35 per two cubic-yard scoop and yard waste compost for $25 per two cubic-yard scoop for pick up. The City provides compost delivery for $75 for two cubic yards and offers a woody yard waste mulch for pickup at $10 per two cubic yard scoop. In 2020 Fayetteville delivered 272 cubic yards of finished food-waste compost and residents purchased over 760 cubic yards of finished food-waste compost at the City’s Compost Facility at 1708 E. Armstrong Ave.
For more information about the City of Fayetteville’s composting program, visit https://www.fayetteville-ar.gov/3421/Composting-and-Mulch.