EPA announces funding for regional food waste reduction project

The Mid-America Regional Council has been awarded $174,924 in funding for a project to address food waste reduction in the nine‐county Kansas City region.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 announced the grant on Sept. 30, along with two others for Sustainable Materials Management projects:

  • The Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas, was selected for $95,000 in funding to do a feasibility study for an organic material composting facility, including a site evaluation, feedstock and processing technologies evaluation, concept design, and financial evaluation.
  • Kansas State University Pollution Prevention Institute was selected for $200,000 in funding for a project in Johnson County, Kansas, that will work with industry and community partners to provide on-site technical assistance, identifying and documenting opportunities for food and solid-waste (packaging) source reduction, diversion, and recycling.

Experts say 40% of food in the United States goes to waste, which contributes to greenhouse gas emissions. The food waste reduction project will include a Regional Food Waste Reduction Action Plan, food system mapping and an educational campaign.

“This grant allows MARC to convene regional partners and stakeholders to address food waste in a holistic way through prevention, rescue and composting,” said MARC Executive Director David Warm. “These strategies will get more fresh food to those in need, reduce the financial burden to individual households, limit greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the region’s disposal needs.”

The EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management program is a systematic approach to using materials more productively.