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Update from Zack Grant

Posted by Morgan White on March 19, 2014

The greenhouse is built, the bin is constructed, bedding logistics are in place, and food waste collection should begin the week after spring break. Ramp up to about 150-200 lbs of food waste processing per week should be complete in about 4-5 months. For this bin and the way it fits into the SSF management plan, we’d never process more than 250-300# of actual food waste a week. This would make for a max range of 7,000-14,000 lbs of food waste processed per year (47 weeks, we wouldn’t collect waste during Christmas and Spring Break). 

If there is any confusion about this PILOT vermicomposting project I’d like to clarify it here, because I have gotten a few requests from outside sources about taking in outside food waste (word spreads quickly). This particular unit is only meant as a pilot demonstration to prove this can be done on a larger (potential campus wide) scale. This 5x16 unit we have is an example of one part of what could be a much larger facility. However, if this is successful I would like to see that facility be something that the SSF does not manage, and ideally in another specifically built piece of infrastructure to house a larger scale process. The greenhouse also serves as our transplant production house. Between the existing unit and managing the transplant production system, the SSF has more than it can already incorporate into its existing management.

That being said, once the system is up and running, we’d love to showcase this to any number of relevant parties and incorporate the data into any Zero Waste policy the campus has. As well as any other sustainability metrics the campus tracks.