April 22, 2020

Earth Week: Organic Waste and Compost


The Thermo King Minneapolis Green Team shares information on how food waste is transformed into desirable dirt.

At Thermo King, we know a thing or two about reducing food waste! However, even when we manage to eat the food we buy, there are inevitably organic scraps in the form of peels, cores, bones, shells, etc. Two years ago, Thermo King Minneapolis deployed green organics bins in many locations within the facility to collect these organic scraps along with used or food soiled paper products and commercially compostable packaging. While we have collectively adapted to three options for throwing something away, we probably are not too familiar with what happens to the organic material when it leaves TK. 

Organics are taken to the Mulch Store in nearby Rosemount, MN, which is the site of a commercial composting facility operated by Specialized Environmental Technologies (SET). There, the food scraps are mixed with yard waste from around the Metro and transformed into a soil amendment that can be used in gardening and landscaping. Materials that would have been incinerated at the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center (HERC) can instead be used to help grow food for us! This is an example of designing systems for circularity, which is one of our 2030 sustainability goals.

Check out this news clip from a few years ago that does a great job explaining the process. For more information, check out the Mulch Store’s website or search online for “Organics Recycling” + [your locality].