Austin Zero Food Waste Forum
Creating Value Through Zero Waste Workshop & Training Series
Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol
701 E 11th St, Austin TX
Friday, June 19th, 2015
9:00 am – 4:30 pm

Hosted by: Austin Resource Recovery, City of Austin TX 

USZWBC proudly partnered with Gold Founding Member Austin Resource Recovery to conduct a series of educational Zero Waste events. Food waste is a global problem that touches everyone. The United States wastes up to 40% of its food from farm to fork to landfill. That’s an enormous amount of resources wasting away in landfills – costing consumers, businesses, and the environment. With all the food that goes to waste we could feed the hungry many times over. What’s more is that 1 in 6 adults and 1 in 4 children in the U.S. are food insecure at some point during the year. That amounts to 50 million people impacted right in our own backyards.
What is the Austin Zero Food Waste Forum?
The Austin Zero Food Waste Forum focused on higher solutions to food waste with education and discussion on the issue, and a conversation on how everyone can work together to reach Zero Food Waste. Professionals, students, schools, organizations, and businesses wanting to go beyond composting attended to gain knowledge, inspiration, and brainstorm on solutions. In addition to Austin Resource Recovery, the forum is presented in partnership with

To download a presentation, click on the presentation title.


Welcome: Stephanie Barger, Founder/Executive Director, USZWBC 

The Whole Food System View: Austin’s Sustainable Food System
    • Edwin Marty, City of Austin Office of Sustainability

The Zero Food Waste Movement
    • Higher Solutions to End Food Waste
          Jordan Figueiredo,
    • Amanda Rohlich, Environmental Programs Coordinator, City of Austin Office of Sustainability

Panel: Food Waste Prevention
Preventing food waste before it’s served on a plate is a huge opportunity and many food service business can reduce their pre-consumer food waste by as much as 50% with best practices. Five expert speakers will explore technological and manual best practices to stop food waste at the start, from institutional kitchens to grocery stores to mitigating climate change impacts.                                          

    • Jordan Figueiredo, (moderator)
• Indigestion: Wasted Food & Emissions
          Woody Raine, Zero Waste Planner, Austin Resource Recovery
• Zero Food Waste Starts with Prevention
          Andrew Shakman, President & CEO, LeanPath, Inc
    • Right Sizing of Perishables Purchasing
          Tom Wright, Sustainability Consultant, Sustainable Biz/ Whole Foods Market
Food Waste: Losses in Retail
          Joshua Blaine, Store Manager, in.gredients
Community Approaches
          Thomas Vinson, Senior Coordinator, Zero Waste Network

Panel: Food Recovery
The juxtaposition of one in six food insecure at the same time as almost 40% of all food is waste is one of the biggest challenges and opportunities facing us today. From small scale food rescue to food bank partnerships and important legal considerations, this panel will explore the many ways to save good edible food from going to waste and get it to those in need. 

    • Brandi Clark Burton, City of Austin (moderator)
Keep Austin Fed
          Russell Cavin, Director of Special Events, Keep Austin Fed
• Capital Area Food Bank
          Bethany Carney, Food Sourcing Supervisor, Capital Area Food Bank of Texas
Climate Change and Food Recovery
          Stephen Sturdivant, EPA Region 6- Dallas
• The Law of Food Recovery: Reducing Risk, Maximizing Benefit, Creating Culture (Prezi for clickable links)
          Nicole Civita, Director, Food Recovery Project,
              University of Arkansas School of Law LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law
Environmental Health Services Division
          Vince Delisi, Assistant Division Manager, Austin/Travis County
Health & Human Services/Environmental Health

Lunch Keynote: Ethan Welty,

Panel: Post-Consumer Management
The City of Austin has a forward thinking and aggressive Resource Recovery Master Plan calling for Zero Waste by 2040.  Composting and other post-consumer food waste management are key components of that plan. From composting to urban farming to feeding chickens, the speakers in this panel will share many ways to help your business not only comply with City regulations and goals but also save money and resources in the process. 

     Gena McKinley, City of Austin, Resource Recovery (moderator)
    • The Role of Urban Agriculture in Food Waste Reduction
          Edwin Marty, City of Austin Office of Sustainability
    • Jody Slagle, City of Austin
    • Compost Pedallers
          Dustin Fedako, Founder and CEO, Compost Pedallers
    Chickens: Our Zero Waste Partners and Civic Workers
          Michelle Hernandez, President, Urban Poultry Association of Texas, Inc.
    Organics Diversion Policies in Austin
          Aiden Cohen, Strategic Initiatives Program Manager, Austin Resource Recovery

Discussion and Breakout Session