March 7, 2005 at 6:10 pm (Environment, Portland)

Under a new program designed to recycle food waste from
Portland businesses, leftovers from your restaurant plate will be
transformed into sacks of garden compost you can buy at local home
improvement stores.

Called Portland Composts!, the program announced by Metro and the city
of Portland seeks to keep food discarded by restaurants, grocery stores
and other businesses out of local landfills, where its decomposition
spews greenhouse gases.

I think this is a great idea, and I have often wondered why more places
don't do stuff like this. Yay Portland. But I don't get their obsession
with exclamation points. A few years ago we launched the very
successful Portland Recycles! program. What's next? Portland lets it
mellow if it's yellow! ?




  1. corthar said,

    That’s awesome. Now they need a Portland Feeds! program, where leftover, uneaten food that is normally discarded from restaurants is instead given to the homeless and poor. I have often wondered why this has not been done, and have equally been as disgusted with the reasoning I get from restaurant owners: “If I give it out free, people won’t pay.” Then there is the “If I give it to the homeless, they will start showing up around closing time and scaring away my customers”. What stupid logic, as of course the only people eligible for the free meals would be those in shelters. So for the first argument, I seriously doubt restaurant X has such great food that someone will give up their job and home just to move into the shelter to get a free meal. And for the second argument, why would the homeless show up at the restaurant when the food is being delivered to the shelter? Seriously, you would not believe how much perfectly good food is wasted every day by restaurants all over America.

  2. JB said,

    There is a program in Philly called Philabundance that does exactly that. Not food off people’s plates, but kitchen leftovers. There are vans that drive around and pick stuff up from restaurants and take it to soup kitchens, so owners don’t have to worry about undesirables hanging around the dumpster.

  3. corthar said,

    sweet! Yes, I meant kitchen leftovers. That is so awesome. Why doesn’t every city have a program like that? I suppose lack of funding?

  4. JB said,

    Probably. Philabundance is a non-profit and they barely scratch the surface.

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