The Urban Food Loop Project is a Little Rock Arkansas based 501c(3) non-profit community composting company. We envision a world where food scraps are no longer landfilled. Our mission is to make communities compostable. The three pillars of the Urban Food Loop Project:
- Community-based composting services (food waste/greenhouse gas reduction)
- Community education programs (citizen activation, policy advocacy)
- Fundraising through mission-aligned products (selling artisanal potting blends in wholesale, retail, and value added markets to fund our core activities)
The Urban Food Loop Project’s core offering is a weekly curbside composting program, which is embedded into the essential services of local residents, schools, and restaurants. For a monthly service fee, customers have their food scraps picked up once a week, alongside their trash and recycling bins.
The Urban Food Loop Project also works with schools, churches, and municipalities to design, implement, and sustain unique “Farm to School” and other community garden education programs.
The Urban Food Loop Project and Living Soil Farms collaborated to create The Gift of Living Soil as a unique holiday sales fundraiser to support The Urban Food Loop Project's Farm to School & Community Composting programs. But why you ask?
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization, a division of the United Nations, approximately 40% of food in the United States goes to waste, and on a global scale, nearly one third of food produced for human consumption is wasted each year. Food waste makes up 60% of the residential waste stream after recyclables are separated. The average American household throws away 1.28 pounds a day, totaling 467.2 lbs./year. On a national scale, 33 tons of food is wasted annually in the U.S., which the NRDC says is the equivalent of throwing away $168 Billion dollars each year. Not even 3% of food waste in the U.S. is recovered and composted. Every ton of food wasted equates to approximately 3.8 tons of green house gas emissions. Food waste in landfills breaks down anaerobically, and it produces methane, which is 21-23 times more potent than carbon dioxide in terms of green house gases.
While all this is happening on small and large scales across the country, US farm land soils are being degraded. Increasing populations have lead to farmers relying on chemical based fertilizers to meet increasing demand. Chemical based fertilizers are designed to feed only the plants, not the soil, effectively killing off the entire Soil Food Web (microbial support system) of plants.
But there is good news! These problems prompt people and organizations to take action. The Urban Food was created to turn the problem of food waste into the solution of Living Soil for farmers, gardeners, and house plant lovers across the US.
The mission of The Urban Food Loop Project is to make communities compostable by educating citizens about how to make and use compost locally. The Urban Food Loop Project offers central Arkansas residents and businesses curbside composting services as well as hands community food systems education programs and online resources through which citizens are educated about local and sustainable food systems. The Urban Food Loop Project is also involved in advocating for sound public policies that foster accountable and responsive institutions through the Little Rock Natural Environment Committee (a mayoral committee to the Little Rock Sustainability Commission).
proceeds going to fund the core offerings of The Urban Food Loop Project business operations.
We believe we are in a unique position to expand our operations and continue to help residents and businesses reduce their waste and greenhouse gas emissions, provide a valuable natural resource to local growers, and educate citizens about the role each of us plays in supporting the health of our nation’s farms. Through these efforts, we hope to prove that community composting operations, like The Urban Food Loop Project, can network together with one another on a national level, and alongside the USDA and NRCS to provide the missing links to solving larger soil health problems for US farmers.