Thought for food, as Philly Council considers composting scraps

Listen
fruit and vegetable scraps

(Photo via ShutterStock)

Once upon a time in Philadelphia, people put a garbage bucket of food scraps on the curb that was picked up to feed pigs in South Jersey.

City council is thinking of reviving the practice, with a twist.

A new resolution calls for hearings about starting curbside collection of food waste that would be used for composting.

Commercial recycling of this type is already under way, according to Phil Bresee of the city Streets Department.

“Food-waste recycling at the city’s correctional facilities, food-waste recycling at each of the sports facilities in South Philadelphia,” he said. “Food-waste recycling at a number of private businesses, including restaurants, markets, caterers and office buildings.”

Councilwoman Cindy Bass says her 5-year-old daughter has started composting at home.

“She instructs me not to throw food away, to compost it. And that’s the way our young people are going,” Bass said.

The project would cost an estimated $30 million to start and $7 million a year for operations, Bresee estimated.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Help us get to 100% of our membership goal to support the reporters covering our region, the producers bringing you great local programs and the educators who teach all our children.