Business Spotlight: Iris Waste Diversion Specialists
Q: Tell us about Iris Waste Diversion Specialists?
IWD: We’re more than consultants… We’re resultants! At Iris, we specialize in evaluating, designing, implementing, and managing material diversion and minimization programs to meet clients’ goals and exceed expectations. Our record of success is the result of learning about our clients’ ambitions and applying our Team’s unique abilities and desire to minimize waste into practical solutions. By being certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the WBENC (Women’s Business Enterprise National Council), we recognize the commitment to supplier diversity that is embraced by corporations and government agencies today, and can add diversity to your supply chain.
Q: What are your services?
IWD: Our vast portfolio contains a number of different and unique services for many types of clients and endeavors. One of these services includes Materials Measurement, which includes the assessment, auditing, characterization, study, surveying, and reporting of waste streams. Our Communications and Outreach service involves digital media marketing, marketing collateral design and distribution, curriculum development and delivery, and even virtual education. In addition, we offer Program Management which includes the oversight of resource recovery operations and grant work. Looking to host a Zero Waste event? Leave it to Iris to get your volunteers, logistics, and event day execution in order!
Q: Tell us more about your Give a Scrap program?
IWD: Our Give A Scrap Food Scrap Pickup Service started as a pilot program open to residents of Bay City and Saginaw in April 2022. Like many, we look for every opportunity to reduce our impact on the planet and keep unnecessary items out of the landfill. With our subscription-based residential food scrap pickup service, we were able to make this solution readily available to thousands of households in the surrounding area. With the help of an EGLE Infrastructure Grant, our program was able to take off and garner some dedicated subscribers right off the bat. This grant allowed us to supply subscribers with collection buckets, kitchen pails, and instructional handouts. We were also able to purchase a shiny new e-transit van to assist with collection, as well as an e-tractor for on-site food scrap management.
The food scraps collected through this service are delivered to 5Heart Earthworm Farm where they are pre-composted before being fed to thousands of red worms. Acceptable food scraps include all vegetable and fruit scraps, egg shells, coffee grounds and paper filters, tea bags, and pumpkins. We also offer a business food scrap pickup service, which is assessed and serviced on a case-by-case basis. Collection is similar to that of the Give A Scrap residential program.
Q: What is the passion behind Iris?
IWD: Much of the passion behind Iris’s success is a direct result of Sarah Archer’s dedication to providing clients and her team with resourceful opportunities for improvement and unique experiences when it comes to doing what’s right for our planet! Iris was established out of a deep respect for the earth and a desire to protect it through effective education and environmental programs. We may be small, but we’re still mighty! We enjoy breaking down the self-imposed limitations that often stifle projects, as we’re always thinking outside the box. Generating creative insight and opportunity is our specialty!
Q: What are a few easy ways people can reduce their carbon footprint?
IWD: Anyone can take simple steps to reduce their daily carbon footprint! Keeping food scraps out of the landfill is one of the most significant steps you can take because organic matter contributes to the creation of methane, a known contributor to climate warming. We make it easy to do this with our Give A Scrap Food Scrap Pickup Service. Other steps you can take include choosing reusable bags, bottles, and dinnerware for parties and outings (we don’t leave the house without our bamboo cutlery!). Bring reusable mesh bags when grocery shopping to significantly reduce the amount of plastic bags you take home. Commute or ride a bike to work to save on gas emissions. Utilize your local recycling drop-off site or curbside services and take the time to learn the rules and waste reduction opportunities available to your community.
Q: Anything else you would like to add?
IWD: Reducing and diverting your waste doesn’t need to be difficult. The first step in starting your journey to create a cleaner, healthier planet is educating yourself and others! Take the time to search for available programs or locations in your area that provide opportunities to make a local difference. Find resources and learn more about the Give A Scrap Food Scrap Pickup Service at www.iriswds.com.