Circular Innovation Council named finalist in federal food waste challenge

The Circular Innovation Council has been named one of 12 finalists in Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Food Waste Reduction Challenge: Business Models stream.   

Designed for the institutional, commercial, and industrial (IC&I) sector, which is Canada’s largest generator of food waste, the council’s project aims to reduce costs, and emissions, and maximize food waste diversion.

It aims to mimic the efficient municipal model of door-to-door collection in a regionally consolidated collection system, providing affordable organics diversion for all sizes and types of generators of food waste, while also facilitating edible food rescue.

It is being piloted in Ontario’s Guelph and Wellington County, and offers regionally based, shared collection service and costs between neighbouring locations. It also incorporates edible food rescue and offers co-operative cost-sharing between participants.  

Guelph-Wellington Results to Date: (Nov 1 – April 30, 2022)

“Being selected as a finalist recognizes Circular Innovation Council’s leadership in developing innovative circular economy solutions and facilitating unique partnerships between the public and private sectors”, said Jo-Anne St. Godard, executive director. 

“We look forward to improving and expanding the co-operative co-shared financial model while testing its transferability in other jurisdictions across Canada.” 

In May 2021, Circular Innovation Council received a $100,000 grant from the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Food Waste Reduction Challenge: Business Models stream that enabled the pilot to launch in Guelph and Wellington County, Ontario.  

As one of 12 finalists, Circular Innovation Council will receive an additional $400,000 to expand its pilot projects, testing this model in various communities and under a variety of conditions.

To further test the model, Circular Innovation Council is seeking host municipalities, associations, and/or local business organizations outside of Ontario where there is appetite to advance the circular economy and maximize diversion of edible food and organic waste.