A New York City startup is using potato peels, apple cores, and rotten tomatoes to help farmers grow fresh fruits and vegetables.
“We take produce waste from food distributors and food processors – anything that can’t go to a food bank or farm,” says Tinia Pina, founder and CEO of Re-Nuble.
The company converts food waste into organic fertilizer pellets that can be used in indoor, hydroponic farms.
Pina says when dissolved in water, the pellets make the nutrients immediately available to the plant, mimicking the biological nutrient systems found outdoors.
So she says the technology can help make it easier to grow organic food indoors in urban areas, where fresh local food is often scarce.
And it helps the climate. It keeps food out of landfills, where it would otherwise decompose and release methane, a potent greenhouse gas.
It also reduces the need for synthetic fertilizers, which create a lot of carbon pollution when they’re manufactured.
So far, the company has facilities in New York City and Rochester, New York, and plans to expand to the West Coast. Pina hopes to eventually help cities across the country use their food scraps to grow local, organic food.
Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media.