February 10, 2021
In this issue you will get an update on waste diversion including composting efforts, food waste prevention, community conversation invite, and summary of the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines presentation. Also, be sure to check out information on the upcoming Participatory Budgeting Webinar.
Community Connections
Community Conversation

Please join us for our weekly remote Food Coalition Community Conversation, where we will discuss Waste Diversion: Food Waste Prevention and Recycling.

Date: Thursday, February 11, 2021

Time: 2:00 - 3:00 pm Mountain Time

Join the Food Coalition and Matt Archuleta to learn about our County’s waste diversion efforts, including recycling, the transfer station, and the landfill. We will also discuss a waste diversion grant in process with the County for improvements to the transfer station layout, a glass crusher, composting at the transfer station (including food waste), and community education and social marketing around food waste prevention, composting, and recycling. 

Call in Number: 1-669-900-9128 Meeting ID: 844 3128 3863
Updates on Supporting Our Community Food System
The Food Coalition continues to work on the six components of our food system (Click here). Food Waste Prevention and Resouce Recovery is one of the six components of our food system.
Composting, Waste Diversion, and Recycling
Last week, the Food Coalition facilitated a remote conversation of community members and leaders around past, current and future efforts related to composting, waste diversion, and recycling in Archuleta County. Read below for learning from a past volunteer-based community composting effort and see a call for glass recycling services in our County.
In 2012, 2014, and 2016 from March-November: two individuals with $300 seed money from the Garden Club and their own labor worked for three summers on building a productive composting project. They operated eight pallet (collected from local merchants) bins on the Hwy 84 side of the county extension building. They used sawdust from cabinet makers’ shops as brown material and green material from local restaurants which they picked up twice a week. With the addition of water, these bins “cooked” for 3-4 days and were then turned into a neighboring bin; water was added again and in 3-4 days it would be ready to be bagged in 5 gallon bags which were exhibited at various places – Pagosa Farmers Market, County Fair and Town Parks and Rec – all with an eye toward finding a permanent owner and location. Contacts made with local government and local businesses. Learnings: plenty of material to collect; public interested in process and product; business ready to donate; process was perfect, the volunteer-based effort needed an entity to ensure sustainability.
— Pauline Benetti
Community Interest in Glass Crushing
Southwest Organization for Sustainability (SOS) is predominantly interested in the recycling components as it relates to glass [1]. Currently, all but glass is being recycled in Archuleta County. We believe that with the availability of a glass crusher in the community 1) local and regional markets could be expanded to reuse the recycled glass resource, 2) jobs and economic growth could be generated by utilizing the glass by-product, and 3) long-term behavioral changes could be made related to the resource within the community. Specifically our interest is in a glass crusher that the county was looking into more than 2 years ago. 

[1] "A report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) found that no solid raw material is used more than sand and gravel. But these fine grains are in short supply. Thirty billion metric tons of sand are shoveled into cement mixers around the world every year." Crushed glass could potentially be a viable substitute for sand.
— Denise Rue-Pastin
Food Waste Prevention and Resource Recovery
Food waste happens at all stages of the food system. From extra food growing in a farmer's field that doesn't make it to market to the food we throw away at home when cooking dinner. When looking at all waste across all parts of the food system, almost 40% of food is wasted at some point in the process. Read more...
How do you reduce waste at home and work? Take our poll to share the activities you participate in.
Grow Local, Buy Local, Eat Local
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, "The need to shift to more sustainable diets and food systems is increasingly evident but certainly not simple to achieve." The Food Coalition invites the community to engage in learning about our food system in advancing food equity. In a recent Community Conversation, Joan Ward, PhD, RD shared updates on the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. She pointed out that this is the first set of guidelines that provide guidance for healthy dietary patterns by life stage. The guidelines are used to develop, implement, and evaluate Federal food, nutrition, and health policies and programs. Read more...
Upcoming Events
Participatory Budgeting Webinar
Thursday February 25, 2:00-3:30 pm
We would like to invite you to be a part of a webinar we are hosting on the Participatory Budgeting (PB) effort last fall. We are hosting this webinar in partnership with the Blueprint to End Hunger who helped fund this project. The webinar will be available in both English and Spanish and will take place on Thursday, February 25 at 2:00 pm. Please register here to receive the zoom link for the webinar. We are excited to share our learning from PB process with the broader community.
Your contribution to an equitable community-based food system makes a world of difference
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