Tackling food, organic waste

As the provincial government shifts to a ‘circular economy,’ York Region is sharing recommendations designed to tackle food and organic waste in Ontario with the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.

Those recommendations include addressing barriers to recovery programs in the growing multi-residential sector and including compostable packaging and branded organics under the full producer responsibility program. The region also wants to focus on innovative technologies that align with provincial climate change and resource recovery targets, while engaging stakeholders already working on food waste education.

“York Region continues to be a provincial leader in addressing food waste reduction in our communities,” said Mario Ferri, Vaughan regional councillor and environmental services chair. “The Good Food program, launched in 2015, is helping residents reduce food waste at home, school and work as we work towards the 2031 target of reducing food waste in the green bin by 15 per cent.”

The provincial government’s waste-free strategy, climate change plan and the proposed framework for food and organic waste promise to help build a circular economy and fight climate change. A circular economy is one in which materials are never discarded but reused or recycled into new products and reintegrated into the market.

“Together with our local cities and towns, York Region is one of the first municipalities to establish a long-term target for food waste reduction,” said Wayne Emmerson, York Region chairman and CEO. “Building on the success of our SM4RT Living Integrated Waste Master Plan, the region is well-positioned to provide guidance and input and collaborate with the province on the actions proposed.”

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