How One Massachusetts Grocer is Converting Food Waste to Energy

By Megan Greenwalt, Waste360.

A Quincy, Mass.-based grocery store is using anaerobic digestion to convert food waste into energy. Stop & Shop has partnered with a local technology company to open an anaerobic digestion facility in the state.

Officially launched on April 15, the facility converts the food waste from all 212 Stop & Shop New England stores to generate energy used to power its 1.1 million-sq.-ft. Freetown (Mass.) Distribution Center. Stop & Shop worked with Divert Inc. to construct the plant.

“It recreates the natural process of anaerobic digestion, a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material, to convert the carbon in edible food into a natural biogas, a clean, renewable and local energy source that can be used to generate electricity,” says Philip Tracey, Stop & Shop manager of public relations. “The process is carried out in an enclosed, oxygen-free environment, which means it generates no odors.”