By Mary Beth Schaye | May 27, 2021

What comes to mind when you think of water? Do you think about being at the beach and gazing at the water? Or do you think about being in the water, either swimming in it or bathing or showering in it? Maybe you think of water in terms of precipitation. Does rain really affect you because you depend upon it? Do you grow food, either on a large or small scale? I probably gave it away by the image I chose to go with this blogpost, but I think about drinking water. I recently used the program Noom to […]

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Circularity: Restorative and Regenerative

By Mary Beth Schaye | April 21, 2021

April has become Earth Month and the week that includes Earth Day, April 22nd, has become Earth Week. We are heading into this week as I sit down to write. Very soon thereafter, May 2nd–8th, 2021, is a week that does not get quite as much attention around the world: International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW). This year, an organization in which Collective Resource Compost is deeply involved, Illinois Food Scrap Coalition (IFSC), is creating an online Lunch & Learn Series to celebrate it.

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Last Chance to Lower Your Carbon Footprint

By Mary Beth Schaye | March 25, 2021

I’m reading a midlife memoir written by musician Ben Folds called A Dream About Lightning Bugs: A Life of Music and Cheap Lessons. I love his explanation of the title that is about an actual dream he had when he was little, wherein he was catching lightning bugs in a jar and showing them to others. In the dream, he was the only one who could see them to catch them. He felt that the dream was a pretty accurate depiction of his life as an artist. Showing others what he finds luminous. That’s how I feel about this […]

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Rethinking Waste

By Mary Beth Schaye | February 24, 2021

I thought I was going to write about the circular economy but it’s going to have to wait until next month. There is one particular part of a circular economy that I do want to write about: extended producer responsibility. It’s when the producer is responsible for disposing of the waste created by their product instead of the end-user being responsible. Our composting customer Village Farmstand has begun taking back their packaging, reusing what can be reused, composting what is compostable, and recycling. Do you know of any other businesses that do this? You might also recognize their name […]

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Nature As Inspiration, Plus All This Other Cool Stuff We’ve Got Going On

By Mary Beth Schaye | January 21, 2021

I’m so jazzed about all of the things we have going on and I don’t think it’s the coffee talking. Restaurant Raffle 2021 Inspired by the Village of Winnetka’s Take Out Challenge we created our own Restaurant Raffle to support the restaurants and other food-related businesses that have made sustainability a priority by continuing to use our composting service through the COVID crisis. We hope that you will peruse the list, give them your business and enter the raffle! Environmental Justice Discussion Group We’ve officially launched our Environmental Justice Discussion Group. We introduced the idea in our blogpost Addressing […]

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Environmental Justice Discussion Group 2021

By Mary Beth Schaye | January 21, 2021

Education has always been a part of our business. This was surprising to us at first, but it became clear that if we were going to persuade anyone to use our service, we needed to educate them on why our planet needs us to compost. These days we do a lot of educating through our monthly blog on the topics of composting, zero waste and other areas of sustainability. After the George Floyd uprisings, many book groups popped up focused on reading and discussing books on racism/anti-racism and reading books by authors of color, but we were not aware […]

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Restaurant Raffle 2021: Win While Helping Local Businesses

By Mary Beth Schaye | January 13, 2021
Restaurant raffle

Who’s ready for a post-holiday game that just happens to help our composting community? Winters are historically slower times for restaurants and cafes. This winter is likely to be even harder. Win a restaurant gift card We’re sponsoring a raffle for you to win a gift card from any of the food-related businesses listed below. You get to choose which one. First prize: $75 gift card, Second prize: $50 gift card, Third prize: $25 gift card. Raffle rules The raffle runs from January 13 through February 28, 2021. Show us receipts from any of the food-related businesses that are […]

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Hope for the Future

By Mary Beth Schaye | December 22, 2020

What do you hope for in 2021? I’m hoping that the COVID-19 vaccine works, that it is distributed quickly and equitably, and that any environmental gains that we’ve experienced because of the pandemic endure. I’m also encouraged that we can pass the Clean Energy Jobs Act (CEJA) in Illinois and President-elect Biden’s version of the Green New Deal (The Biden Plan for a Clean Energy Revolution and Environmental Justice) in the United States. When I was thinking about the renewed hope for real climate and environmental justice progress that comes with the change in administration, I remembered this inspiring […]

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7000 Tons and Counting

By Erlene Howard | November 25, 2020

We’re happy to announce that we have reached another diversion milestone: 7000 tons! Can you believe it? Power of composting What’s amazing to us is that’s 7,000 tons lifted, shifted, and tipped by hand— no hydraulics. That’s a whole lot of muscle power from our crew. 14 million pounds of lifting and that doesn’t even include the weight of the containers, just the food scraps within1. Because tons are kind of hard to visualize, we used this nifty calculator2 to try to help you understand how very much that is. It’s about 1/4th as heavy as the Statue of […]

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Municipal Franchise Agreements: Making a Difference

By Mary Beth Schaye | November 24, 2020

It’s the holiday season and you might be expecting a blog post about green gifts. Here’s the post that I wrote last year. Not all of the ideas are applicable during a pandemic but I’m always going to suggest experiences over things. If you have been in our composting community for a few years, you probably know that we entered into a franchise agreement with our hometown of Evanston in November 2017 and our neighbors in Skokie in January 2020, but have you heard that we’ve just added Morton Grove beginning December 2020? You may be wondering what a […]

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