A woman stands outside and dumps biodegradable trash out of a bucket and into a composting pile. The compost is fenced in by a waist-high stack of cinderblocks. The woman is wearing a gray wool hat, a brown patterned sweater, and gloves. The area behind the woman is a clearing in the woods; the trees in the distance are a mix of bare deciduous trees and green-leaved coniferous trees.
Some waste-cutting apps help connect restaurants and other food-related businesses with composting services that recycle inedible food waste. — Getty Images/RyanJLane

The desire for businesses to achieve reduced, or even zero-waste, goals has greatly increased. For small business owners, trash and recycling costs can be significant expenses. The good news is that cutting waste can be great for marketing and the environment, as well as a business’s bottom line.

Here are some tools and companies that help small businesses cut their waste.

[Read more: The Zero-Waste Movement is Creating for Businesses Large and Small]

Goodr

The Goodr Foundation is a nonprofit working to end hunger and food waste problems by bringing food to people who need it, rather than having the surplus end up in landfills. Goodr’s food waste solutions for businesses include:

  • Surplus food recovery: Businesses can donate their surplus food for a tax donation.
  • Organics recycling: Inedible food gets recycled into compost or biofuel.
  • Waste management: Goodr can obtain and haul waste bins for businesses.

Goodr’s hunger relief solution programs use partnerships and sponsorships to fund, create, and operate:

  • Pop-up grocery markets: Surplus food is delivered to communities in need and offered to them at no charge.
  • Grocery meal delivery: Food is delivered directly to the door of community members most in need.
  • Student snack packs: Snacks, meals, and beverages are provided to school children.
  • Goodr grocery stores: Goodr establishes and operates easily accessible neighborhood food pantries.

Details on partnering with Goodr can be found here.

[Read more: How Startups are Monetizing the Booming Food Waste Business]

myWaste

The myWaste app helps businesses manage and streamline their waste and recycling operations. It also helps businesses reduce recycling costs and stay up to date on compliance and environmental regulations.

Inside the myWaste app, businesses can view and filter various reports and information on how much each site is disposing of, so they can better manage their resources and make any necessary changes. The app even allows you to track your carbon footprint, as well as its savings, to determine which waste streams are the most effective in reducing your footprint. In the Invoices and Statements section, you can also see how much you’ve spent and saved in your consolidating process, helping you better understand your collection volumes and how you can save more going forward.

Businesses can access free waste management advice from the myWaste team and receive quick turnaround on waste solution quotes within the app.

Registration information for myWaste can be found here.

Too Good To Go is an app that helps reduce food waste by allowing people to purchase unsold food that businesses would normally throw away at a discounted price.

Olio

Olio is an app that connects local people for item donation and pickup. This helps businesses and individuals cut their waste by putting no-longer-used items into the hands of people who need them, rather than in a landfill.

The app allows you to post a photo of the item or items you are looking to get rid of; then, people in your area see the item and can message you in the app to arrange a pickup. Small businesses can use this to donate usable, unneeded items that were bound for the landfill — and save money while doing so.

Business partnering information for Olio is found here.

Too Good To Go

Too Good To Go is an app that helps reduce food waste by allowing people to purchase unsold food that businesses would normally throw away at a discounted price. Users can download the app for free, view what businesses participate in the program, and opt to buy available bags of surplus food.

For food businesses, the app provides an opportunity to sell surplus food that they would normally throw away. The program can be a great way to promote the business, since it allows users to sample the food at a discount. The app is free to download, and businesses only pay for the program when they make a sale of surplus food. A portion of the sale is automatically deducted through the app to cover an annual fee and a small commission for the service provided. The money earned from sales is issued to the business on a quarterly basis.

Businesses can sign up to partner with Too Good to Go on the company’s website.

[Read more: Five Small Business Owners on Practicing Sustainability]

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

CO—is committed to helping you start, run and grow your small business. Learn more about the benefits of small business membership in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, here.

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