Author: Catherine Clifford
The U.S. has a ginormous, mind-boggling food waste problem. One team of entrepreneurs, investors and infrastructure builders are trying to use some of that garbage to grow more fruits and vegetables.
Consumers, businesses and farmers spend $218 billion a year growing, processing, transporting and disposing of 62 million tons of food that never gets eaten, according to an analysis by ReFED, an organization that raises awareness of the excessive food waste problem in the U.S.
California Safe Soil has invented and patented a technology that takes organic food waste, mixes it with enzymes and creates a liquid, organic fertilizer that has been proven to grow more fruits and vegetables with less water.
The goal is to spread the innovative technology across the U.S. It’s a laudable goal, but it will require both significant infrastructure upgrades and a change in consumer behavior.
Two birds. One stone.
The beauty of the California Safe Soil fertilizer is that it both reduces trash headed to landfills and the use of toxic fertilizers.
“We all go to the grocery store every day and we all see these volumes of meat and produce that are there and we all wonder what happens on the expiration date,” says Alex Urquhart, former CEO of GE Energy Financial Services and partner of Kamine Development Corporation, a New Jersey-based family investment office that is working to commercialize California Safe Soil’s technology. “You take that waste and you add enzymes and you can produce a high-grade fertilizer that increases the yield on crops.”