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Baldor Is Turning Food Waste into Animal Feed, and Profits

Food distributor Baldor processes a million pounds a week of carrots and oranges so that they can go into mixed berry boxes. In the past, its scraps were tossed in landfills. But not anymore.

Fast Company reports that the Bronx-based business is taking 150,000 pounds of food waste and is repackaging that. Most of that is turned into animal feed.

“They could use that to make a carrot ribbon cookie, or make stock,” says Thomas McQuillan, director of food service sales and sustainability at Baldor, in the Fast Company piece. He has spent the last year and a half getting the company to the goal of sending zero organic waste to landfill, the story says.

Who buys its repackaged goods? The story points to Washington, DC-based Misfit Juicery, which takes Baldor’s carrot peels and other produce scraps to make cold-pressed juice. In New York City, it says that a cooking school named Haven’s Kitchen does the same to make soups and broths.

Baldor had considered composting the scraps but decided against it because the logistics of transportation — city to farms — would be expensive, the story says. At the same time, the food distributor told Fast Company that it is saving money by preventing waste haulers from taking away the food waste while making money by repackaging it and selling it into the market.

“Food is an asset for a company like Baldor, or any other company that buys food,” McQuillan told Fast Company. “It’s a major part of your asset, so you need to treat it responsibly, like everything else. When you start thinking about it in those terms, you say wait a minute, if I can glean a little bit more yield out of this product, I can make more money.”

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