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Chaminade University of Honolulu converts its food waste into compost

Updated: May 20, 2023

Bro. Ed Brink, SM, Vice President for Mission and Rector at the Chaminade University of Honolulu, HI, sends us this update.

Starting in February 2023, Chaminade University's Service Learning and Community Engagement office in collaboration with the Chaminade's CIFAL center and Alumna, Cara Gutierrez ʻ22 have begun to transform the way the campus views food waste. Composting or the conversion of organic material to nutrient-dense soil through decomposition is allowing students to recover up to 80 lbs of food waste per week.

At any time, four types of composting can be found at Chaminadeʻs māla (garden). The four types provide different decomposition opportunities for a large variety of food to be composted. From a combination of vermicast, bokashi, tumbling, and hot composting Chaminade is doing its best to recover a resource that has been notoriously underutilized. Now, nutrient-dense compost from food waste across campus is encouraging healthier plant growth and soil restoration for the entire Chaminade ʻohana.

Pictured above is Mitch Steffey, Associate Director, Service Learning and Community Engagement. The two Chaminade students with him are River Pitcher (on the left in the close-up picture) and Niya Schady (on the right in the same photo). Niya is also a 2022 graduate of Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School (Marianist) in Cleveland.

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