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Soil Company Takes Old Food From Nugget Market, Safeway For Ag Use

Soil Company Takes Old Food From Nugget Market, Safeway For Ag Use

Nugget Market Inc. has agreed to supply food residuals from its West Sacramento store to startup California Safe Soil LLC, which opened a pilot plant earlier this month in West Sacramento where it will convert leftover food from supermarkets into a low-cost, nutrient-rich soil amendment as early as this summer.

The Sacramento Business Journal reports that California Safe Soil also is receiving organic waste from Pleasanton-based Safeway Inc.’s store in south Davis. According to company founders, the pilot operation could ramp up to 14 stores.

The pilot plant, set to open June 1, is designed to use enzymes to convert the food residuals into food hydrolysate, a valuable soil amendment for agricultural use.

Ed Lewis, a University of California Davis professor of entomology who studies soil ecology, is managing a research program to test the food hydrolysate produced by CSS. The company expects the tests to show that the food hydrolysate can be used by farmers to reduce their use of chemical fertilizers, maintain crop yield and quality and save money while reducing nitrate runoff.

“This has great potential to be a ‘win-win’ for Nugget Market and the environment, as part of our ongoing commitment to sustainable business practices,” Kate Stille of Woodland-based Nugget Market said in a news release. “We have been looking for the right organics recycling program, and are happy to support the research being conducted by CSS and UC Davis. We encourage California farmers to join with us in testing this product on their cropland, to help create a truly sustainable program, returning unsold food to the soil to produce the next crop of locally grown fresh produce for Nugget to offer to its customers.”

 

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