Research and analysis

Policy Toolkit: Develop Effective Policy to Keep Food Scraps Out of Landfill and Scale Composting Infrastructure

The Compost Policy Toolkit offers valuable insights for navigating the complexities of compostable packaging policy and food waste diversion.

The policy landscape around compostable packaging and organics infrastructure is complex and evolving at breakneck pace. Policymakers, regulators and other decision-makers are calling for data and guidance to create enduring and harmonized policies that can contribute to a circular economy and to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

The Compost Policy Toolkit is an outcome of the Composting Consortium’s in-depth research and engagement on policy, in collaboration with key stakeholders throughout the composting and compostable packaging industries. It covers three critical policy topics, including packaging labeling laws, extended producer responsibility and compost end market expansion.

The Toolkit is released at a critical juncture. Today, food scraps make up nearly a quarter of all U.S. landfills and are responsible for 58% of fugitive methane emissions. Reducing organic waste is recognized as a key pathway to achieving critical climate targets, and compostable packaging emerges as a tool to divert food waste, but it requires a well-managed transition.

This comprehensive resource aims to equip policymakers and regulators with insights and best practices, guiding policy development to ensure new materials like certified food-contact compostable packaging work with existing commercial composting infrastructure, while also incentivizing infrastructure development for responsible processing of these materials.

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