There are many reasons why for restaurants in New York some owners are resistant to composting and separate organic waste bins including a lack of space, lack of training for the staff and a fear of odour (Rao, 2013).
Based on this, much of the problem is due to a lack of education in a city where composting was seen to have been difficult due to density and building height problems. For the lack of space, this is a legitimate issue for these restaurants as many have to wait for pick ups or other services to come otherwise the build up of organic waste would be too much and would result in people using general waste bins again for this organic waste due to a fear of the odour in a restaurant.
(Closed Loop, 2013)
In Australia, a company called Closed Loop has created machines that will turn scraps into compost within 24 hours and has worked with restaurants in Melbourne to install these machines (Holroyd, 2013).
While the standard machine only has a 4kg capacity which is not suitable for restaurants that go through large amounts of organic waste a day, Closed Loop has worked with the Melbourne restaurants to create CLOey units that can hold hundreds of kilograms of organic waste. Since this machine takes raw meat and other waste that is usually not composted with vegetable and fruit scraps, there will not be a need for training in order for restaurant staff to compost properly.
The CLOey solves many problems experienced by New York restaurants by reducing the volume of the waste by up to 90% in 24 hours, eliminating the need for multiple bins waiting for collection. Given the capabilities of the machine (“Now Cecconi’s 600kg of weekly food waste, including bones and fish heads leftover from making stock, is converted into about 120kg of compost within a day of going into the restaurant’s composting unit.” (Holroyd, 2013)) it’s also feasible that multiple restaurants or businesses could use the same unit to further space saving.
By not working with pickup services restaurant owners could also save money as “Joe Burke, director of sales at Action Environmental Services, a waste management company, said it costs more to pick up organic waste because the process, from pickup to dump, is much slower.” (Rao, 2013). On the other hand, restaurant owners who have worked with Closed Loop in Australia have been able to save money. Time and money are saved with this proposed solution and everything is kept in-house for the restaurant owners which gives them greater control. The compost that is produced with this machine then becomes a valuable resource whether to use in the restaurant by starting a garden or to provide to other businesses.
Closed Loop, 2013, CLOey – The Ultimate Composter, video recording, Vimeo, viewed 13 June 2016,< https://vimeo.com/72234871 >.
Holroyd, J., 2013, Wanted: Wasteful restaurants for composting trial. Viewed 13 June 2016 < http://www.goodfood.com.au/good-food/food-news/wanted-wasteful-restaurants-for-composting-trial-20130730-2qwv9.html >
Rao, T., 2013, For Restaurants, Composting Is a Welcome but Complex Task, New York. Viewed 12 June 2016, < http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/20/dining/for-restaurants-composting-is-a-welcome-but-complex-task.html?_r=0 >