Welcome to the Haul of Fame, a weekly series from Rubicon in which we sit down with a hauler partner to talk about their company, their community, and how they’re collaborating with Rubicon in our mission to end waste.
Natural Upcycling is headquartered in Linwood, New York and prides itself on being “upstate New York’s premier food scraps/organics collection company.” With ten dedicated food waste recycling trucks and 20 employees, Natural Upcycling focuses on the collection of 32- and 64-gallon food waste totes from commercial businesses across New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia. On average, the company helps recycle more than ten million pounds of food scraps per month. Natural Upcycling has been working with Rubicon since 2015.
Chris Noble, General Manager of Natural Upcycling, sat down with Rubicon to talk about the company and mission for the Haul of Fame.
How does Rubicon’s mission to end waste match-up to Natural Upcycling’s own company mission?
Natural Upcycling: We are aligned in our focus on diverting waste from landfills. Over the long-term, the expansion of food waste recycling will reduce harmful emissions from entering the atmosphere, and help our customers save money.
How does Natural Upcycling distinguish itself from the competition?
Natural Upcycling: We are one of only a handful of regional-scale companies that focuses exclusively on the collection of food waste. That singular specialty allows us to build meaningful relationships with food-focused businesses by virtue of our expertise in the space.
What is the view of Natural Upcycling when it comes to participating in the circular economy and helping build a more sustainable future?
Natural Upcycling: We are trying to build a more sustainable future for our community by connecting food waste generators with those facilities most able to efficiently recycle or repurpose organic waste. We follow the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Food Recovery Hierarchy when it comes to allocating that food waste to the appropriate destination. Most of the food waste that we collect goes either to anaerobic digestion or compost.
What do you love most about the community in which you work, and the customers you serve?
Natural Upcycling: We love that we provide a service that helps our customers make a powerful impact on their sustainability goals.
What is the oddest thing you have been asked to compost or recycle?
Natural Upcycling: [laughter] It seems like every day we’re being asked to recycle something weird. A recent one was baby diapers—of which some brands are compostable.
Where does Natural Upcycling see itself five years from now?
Natural Upcycling: The food waste recycling industry will look a lot different in five years with all the investment going into processing technologies and destination facilities. Natural Upcycling will be focused on densifying our existing hauling footprint and fostering the development of a “value chain” for food waste that will establish a long-term benefit to our customers.
Lori Sullivan is Vice President of Hauler Operations at Rubicon. To stay ahead of Rubicon’s announcements of new partnerships and collaborations around the world, be sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, or contact us today.