Stepping Up to the Plate

Food waste: it’s gross. And its potential to power cars and replenish soils is gorgeous. Since recycling food waste is such a hot topic, especially for readers of Bioenergy Insight, Harvest mapped out the drivers that shape how food waste flows through the system after it leaves your plate.

stepping up to the plate: the flow of urban food wasteHere’s a taste of what you’ll learn:

 

Technologies: a quick overview of anaerobic digestion and composting.

Characteristics: Generators, Energetic Densities, Volumes, Distritribution, and the dance known as capture rate versus contamination rate.

Best practices for Public Area Collection (see “Throw in the Know” poster):

  1. Use pictures
  2. Point positive
  3. Place your signs close
  4. Color coordinate
  5. Pair bins

Household access to food waste collection has doubled from 2014 to 2017, to over 5 million households. This trend is just the tip of the iceberg…lettuce. Read the whole story.

And if you like seeing the transformation of “gross to gorgeous” you’ll love this video:

Pumping Value out of Pumpkins: Food Waste Growth Markets

Pumpkins and Other Food WasteThe growth strategy firm, Innosight, published a piece, “The Food Waste Opportunity: How Experiments Can Open New Growth Markets.”  It explores the burgeoning food waste industry and highlights Harvest as a leader in providing organic management solutions.

Here’s one slice of the story:

This Cinderella transformation of discarded food is just one example of how marketplace experiments can help spur new growth markets. Venture capitalists are believers: Harvest Power has raised more than $350 million, making it one of the best-funded startups in New England.

And another bit:

Because food is an organic compound and readily biodegradable, one might assume that all this waste is not a major problem. However, consider this. Food takes resources to produce-water, land, fertilizer, energy. It’s heavy and expensive to transport. As food lies in a landfill, it decomposes and emits methane – a gas 25 times worse for climate change than carbon dioxide. Lastly and certainly not least, there is a high social cost.

Read the full article.

Harvest Named to Global Cleantech 100 for Sixth Year in a Row!

2015_GlobalCleantech100_eBadge_Top100_071415This week Harvest is abuzz at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco.  On Monday night, Harvest was named to the 2015 Cleantech 100; This is the sixth year in a row that Harvest Power has been recognized by the Cleantech Group for its contributions to the cleantech community.

We are honored. See the entire list of 100 companies.

Could your child’s uneaten broccoli help provide electricity?

fortuneHow Harvest Power is transforming food waste into a power source.

HIGHLIGHTS: “The site is far enough from the likes of Splash Mountain and the Cinderella Castle to keep the aroma of rotting lettuce and onions from disrupting the magic of the Magic Kingdom,” and “What we eat – or rather don’t eat – is the next frontier of recycling, and Harvest is in a unique position to capitalize.”  Read the full article.

Food Waste Ban Gets Teeth in Metro Vancouver Region

Your Food Isn't Garbage: Time to obey the food waste ban in BCThis July 1, 2015 marks the date when the food waste ban in the Metro Vancouver region of BC has some teeth.  If you live in the lower mainland, be sure to sort those scraps this Canada Day (and beyond)!

For news and support, check out:

For residents looking for easy tips for sorting scraps, check out our “3 Tips for Successful Sorting” video – easy peasy.

 

 

Interview with Burp Reynolds: Our Anaerobic Bacteria Mascot

Earlier this year Harvest Power sat down with Burp Reynolds, one of the anaerobic bacteria in our digester tanks in Orlando, Florida. The following is an excerpt of the transcript. Burp-Reynolds-300x225[1]

So Burp, what does a typical day look like for you?

My motto is to go with the flow. I mostly hang out at the 6th trophic level with the more “established” bacteria. We work hard – eating, drinking, farting, burping, and reproducing each and every day, 24 hours a day.

Wow, sounds like a lot of work!

Yes, it is, and we think it’s a very efficient use of our time. We’re not like those other renewable energy sources, like the photovoltaics sunning themselves and then sleeping at night. Or wind turbines that produce electricity that then gets lost in transmission lines on its way back to civilization. That’s just a silly situation. Give me my anaerobic bacteria tank and I’m convinced my team is the best in renewable energy.

Thanks so much for all your hard work. What can we do to keep you happy?

Keep the tank temperature steady, and the pH steady, and the fats, sugars and starches pumping in. If any of those conditions change we become “slack-teria”!

What’s your favorite holiday?

Halloween, for sure. We often get an extra batch of expired candy. I think I can speak for anaerobic bacteria around the world when I say we LOVE sugar even more than almost anything in the world. Valentine’s Day is also pretty good: hello candy hearts. Every day is good, though – I like to say that we’re #1 in the #1 and #2 business.

If you had a car, what would you have on the bumper sticker?

That’s easy: “Support Bacteria: It’s the Only Culture Some People Will Ever Have”

Anything else you want the rest of the world to know?

Tell our buddies in Ontario and British Columbia hello! And keep sending us your organic waste – we’ll use it to create power, and power plants!

Learn more at harvestpower.com