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Collecting Scraps to Make a Difference

Evanston-based, woman-owned Collective Resource Compost (CRC) is celebrating 10 years of diverting food scraps and mitigating climate change by making composting easy for Chicagoland residents with residential and commercial pickup service. Founder and owner Erlene Howard says, “I’m thrilled about the idea I had to make food scrap diverting easy for everyone through commercial composting using a container-swap model.” Recent accomplishments have included 6,550 tons diverted from the landfill; the introduction of the Neighbor Totes program for composting communally; and the addition of a box truck to a fleet of seven cargo vans.

“As we reflect on this decade of providing a compost service for people and businesses who did not have the space or ability to do so on their own and zero waste consulting for events, we’ve realized that our unspoken policy is and remains to say yes, and then figure out the details,” says Mary Beth Schaye, a longtime CRC employee and zero waste consultant.

For more information, call 847-733-7665, email [email protected] or visit