Restaurant Chain Explores Industrial Composting


Image credit: Food Recycle

From the Eden project's massive industrial composting facility to mandatory composting in San Francisco, food waste recycling has come a long way in recent years. Now the Yard House chain of restaurants is getting in on the act, testing an on-site mechanical system that it plans to roll out at a number of its locations. Yard House has been testing a eCorect system at its Brea, California location that it says takes typical kitchen waste, such as food and vegetable scraps, and reduces its weight and volume by as much as 93%. The system, a one-touch, space-saving, stand-alone machine, quickly decomposes the compostable waste through intensive heat. The waste is then converted into high-density organic particles which can be used as soil amendments, biomass energy, and organic fillers.

The system is due to be rolled out at other Yard House restaurants, including Temecula, California and San Antonio, Texas, and is part of a wider sustainability effort that includes adoption of Energy Star appliance, LED lighting, and testing waterless urinals. Apparently the company is also experimenting with new ways to dispose of kitchen grease—injecting microorganisms into vats of grease where they literally eat away and ingest the waste.

As a rule, I'm not a big fan of chain restaurants. But if every chain started taking steps like Yard House, they'd be much easier to digest.

Tags: California | Composting | Recycling | United States