EPA recognizes Food Recovery Challenge winners

Grocers, universities, local governments among national winners.


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized 14 businesses and organizations participating in EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge (FRC), under the Trump Administration’s “Winning on Reducing Food Waste” initiative.

This year’s FRC national awardees utilized innovative approaches and engaged in a variety of cost-effective and practical actions to prevent and reduce food waste, EPA stated Monday.

“The Trump administration is working closely with businesses and consumers to prevent food loss, redirect excess food to productive uses and maximize the inherent value of food,” EPA acting administrator Andrew Wheeler says in a press release. “The accomplishments of the Food Recovery Challenge participants not only benefit the environment and the economy, but also serve as excellent examples for other companies, governments and organizations to emulate.” 

This year, EPA is once again recognizing Food Recovery Challenge participants and endorsers with awards in two categories: data-driven and narrative. The data-driven award recipients achieved the highest percent increases in their sector comparing year to year data. Narrative award winners made notable achievements in the areas of source reduction, leadership, innovation, education and outreach  and endorsement.

Two of this year’s national award winners are U.S. Food Loss and Waste 2030 Champions, a group of businesses and organizations who have publicly committed to reduce food loss and waste by 50 percent in their own operations by the year 2030.

Here’s the list of 2018 Food Recovery Challenge national award winners:

Data-driven award winners

  • Grocers: Sprouts Farmers Market Store #256 (Tustin, California)
  • Colleges and Universities: California State University, Northridge (Northridge, California) 
  • K-12 Schools: Shawnee Mission School District - Christa McAuliffe Elementary School (Lenexa, Kansas)
  • Sports and Entertainment Venues: Seattle Mariners/Safeco Field (Seattle, Washington)
  • Hotels, Resorts and Lodging: MGM Resorts International - Bellagio Hotel and Casino Las Vegas (Las Vegas, Nevada) 
  • State/Tribal/Local Government: City of Philadelphia - Department of Prisons (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
  • Non-Profit: ProduceGood (Encinitas, California)
  • Newcomer: The Western Spur Restaurant at Natchez Trace State Park (Wildersville, Tennessee)

Narrative award winners

  • Source Reduction: The Forge Restaurant at Montgomery Bell State Park (Burns, Tennessee)
  • Leadership: University of Texas at Arlington (Arlington, Texas)
  • Innovation: Food Forward (Los Angeles, California)
  • Education and Outreach: Andover Public Schools – Green Schools Andover (Andover, Massachusetts)
  • Endorser: Sodexo (Gaithersburg, Maryland)
  • Endorser – Honorable Mention: Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (Nashville, Tennessee)

More than 1,000 businesses, governments and organizations participate in EPA’s FRC. In 2017, participants prevented or diverted almost 648,000 tons of food from entering landfills or incinerators, saving participants up to $31.2 million in avoided landfill tipping fees. 

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