Food Waste Management Tools and Resources
Sustainable Food Management Tools
Food Waste Audit Log (PDF) (2 pp, 158.60 K) - worksheets that help you record and track your food waste generation and causes
Food Waste Management Cost Calculator estimates the cost competitiveness of alternatives to food waste disposal.
Sustainable Food Management Publications and Guides
Sustainable Food Management Basics
Through EPA's Food Recovery Challenge, businesses commit to reducing the food they send to landfills. EPA provides technical assistance to help businesses save money, support their community, and reduce their environmental impact as well as recognizes leaders in food recovery.
California's Food Scraps Management Resources page offers resources for businesses and households to reduce the amount of food that is wasted.
EPA's Putting Surplus Food to Good Use: A How-To Guide for Food Service Providers (PDF) (2 pp, 213.95 K) helps food service providers start a food waste reduction and recovery program at their facilities.
EPA's Waste Reduction Record-Setters Don't Throw Away That Food: Strategies for Record-Setting Waste Reduction provides case studies from several communities for recovery of food discards.
Learn more about issues relating to food waste at one of these blogs:
The Green Plan for the Food Service Industry is a North Carolina Web site dedicated to helping reduce food waste in the food service industry.
Northeast Recycling Council's Guidance for Special Event Food Waste Diversion (PDF) (102 pp, 2.07MB) describes food waste diversion pilots in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont. These pilots demonstrated different methodologies for designing and implementing diversion programs for pre- and post-consumer food, as well as compostable service ware, and soiled paper. Research and results from the project contributed to development of this guidance document.
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection's Supermarket Recycling Resources help guide supermarkets in diverting materials from landfills. Information on composting and food donation are provided.
The Northeast Recycling Council's Clean Your Plate: An Event Planner's Guide to Composting (4 pp, 346K, About PDF) Guidance provides best management practices and models for source reduction, recycling, and composting at special events.
EPA's Working with Concessionaires and Vendors Resource Guide helps venues set up successful recycling programs as concessionaires and vendors are vital to the success of a program.
Lean Path's Guide to Food Waste Management Best Practices (PDF) (9 pp, 500.28 K)
Food Waste Source Reduction and Prevention
LeanPath's Food Waste Tracking Case Studies illustrate the importance of measuring and tracking food waste as the first step to any food recovery program.
Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act is the federal law that protects food donors from liability as long as they donate in "good faith."
Learn more from Food Donation Connection about how to ensure Food Safety when donating food.
Learn more about the potential Tax Benefits from donating food to those in need.
PA's Waste Not/Want Not: Feeding the Hungry and Reducing Solid Waste Through Food Recovery | PDF Version (59 pp, 1.4MB), developed in conjunction with the US Department of Agriculture, details what businesses and individuals can do to ensure good food doesn't go to waste.
Use Find-A-Composter to find a composting facility in your area.
A Guide to Commercial Food Composting (PDF), compiled by EPA and the Composting Council (15 pp, 586K)
Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Incorporating Food Residuals into Existing Yard Waste Programs (PDF) (34 pp, 2.01MB) assists yard waste composting facilities in expanding operations to include food residuals.
Massachusetts' Supermarket Composting Handbook (PDF) (78 pp, 1.37 MB) is a guide to help supermarkets establish composting programs.
Oregon's Commercial Food Waste Composting Study Project Report presents the findings of a study comparing different methods of composting.
California's Anaerobic Digestion Basics webpage provides basic information on anaerobic digestion.
EPA's Co-Digestion Economic Analysis Tool (CoEAT) helps wastewater treatment plants determine the initial economic feasibility of co-digesting food waste and fats, oils, and grease.
Shopping for Change | PDF Version (1 pg, 363.01 K, about PDFs)
Recycling food scraps is good for the environment and business! Supermarkets in Massachusetts are reducing, recovering, and recycling their food waste and saving money by participating in the state's voluntary supermarket recycling certification program.
Rock and Wrap It Up! Helps Fight Hunger | PDF Version (2 pp, 513.77 K, about PDFs)
Rock and Wrap It Up! (RWU) program is a national anti-poverty think tank that arranges the collection and local donation of leftover food and other basic necessities from rock concerts, sporting events, hotels, corporate meetings, political rallies, and school cafeterias. Among those organizations that have worked with RWU are the New York Giants, the Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the Hyatt Grand Hotel in New York City.
Food Scraps Go to the Animals | PDF Version (1 pg, 261.44 K, about PDFs)
Don't throw away your food waste! Barthold Recycling and Roll-Off Services picks up food scraps from commercial businesses and feeds the scraps to pigs and cattle.
Feeding Animals - The Business Solution to Food Scraps | PDF Version (2 pp, 725.79 K, about PDFs)
New Jersey's Rutgers University, the third largest student dining operation in the country, is a leader in food scraps diversion. To reduce the amount of food waste generated at Rutgers, the dining halls partnered with a local farm. Pinter Farms, who collects on average 1.125 tons of food scraps per day from Rutgers' four main dining halls and feeds it to its hogs and cattle.
Food to Fuel | PDF Version (1 pg, 310.99 K, about PDFs )
Want fries with that fill up? With Pacific Biodiesel you can. Hawaii-based Pacific Biodiesel, Inc. converts recycled cooking oil into fuel that powers generators, commercial equipment, vehicles, and marine vessels. Biodiesel production diverts cooking oil from landfills, while its use reduces emissions of major greenhouse gases and substances such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, volatile organic compounds, hazardous diesel particulates, and the acid-rain-causing sulfur dioxide.
Fine Dining Returns to the Earth | PDF Version (2 pp, 933.63 K, about PDFs)
Guests and the environment both receive the royal treatment at the Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. By focusing on behind the scenes operations, such as food waste management, the hotel is preserving environmental resources and saving money without compromising the guest experience. EPA's Tribal Waste Journal: Tribal Composting Nourishes Land and Tradition (PDF) (28 pp, 957.75 K, about PDFs) includes case studies on food scraps composting from various Native American tribes and Alaskan Native villages.
Food Waste Webinars and Presentations
2010 Roundtable Discussion: Taking a Bite Out of Food Waste Sessions Jean Schwab, EPA ORCR - Taking a Bite Out of Food Waste (PDF) (44 pp, 1.55 MB) Bobby Fanning, Sr. Manager, Solid Waste and Recycling, Walmart - Integrated Organic Diversion Program (PDF) (21 pp, 500.77 K)
Notes from the Roundtable (PDF) (19 pp, 85.17 K)
Food Waste Education Curricula and Student Activities
Pack a Waste Free Lunch contains a poster and activities that will help students learn how to reduce, reuse, and recycle items in their school lunches.
School Composting.The Next Step in Recycling - A Manual for Connecticut Schools , a manual written specifically for K-12 schools, outlines the steps necessary for establishing and maintaining a successful school-wide composting program for cafeteria food scraps.
Wisconsin's Environmental Education for Kids! (EEK!) Composting with Worms page details how to set up a composting bin with worms for food scraps.