The Real Dill has zero food waste thanks to some creative repurposing.
And while the little bits of scraps you throw away in a personal kitchen may seem like much, it's a whole different beast in the restaurant industry. When the The Real Dill started noticing they were throwing away hundreds of pounds of food a week, they knew they had to do something about it. And thanks to some Bloody Mary mix and gardening, today they are 100 percent food waste-free.
So just how did a pickle company achieve zero food waste? It started when The Real Dill, a pickle company in Denver founded by Justin Park and Tyler DuBois in 2012, felt wrong about tossing out hundreds of pounds of waste and gallons of pickle juice weekly. As reported by Fast Company, the Real Dill was already handing out recipes for Bloody Mary mix for people to use with their leftover pickle brine. And while the recipe was getting positive responses from the customers, that didn't help much with the gallons of cucumber water the company was forced to pour down the drain weekly. "[The cucumber juice] is a byproduct, but it tastes incredible," Park told Fast Company, "We figured there had to be a better use for it."
The Real Dill started bottling and selling their own Bloody Mary Mix, their star ingredient being the leftover cucumber juice. However, while it quickly became a customer-favorite, there was still a lot of waste in the form of food scraps. So, Park, who had a background in non-profit work, reached out to a local organization, Re:Vision, that helps provide community gardens and local food systems to low-income neighborhoods. Re:Vision needed more compost, and The Real Dill was looking for a way to get rid of their food scraps a better way. Food scraps, meet compost.
Today, the Real Dill has over 500 store locations in and around Colorado, and proudly says that they are completely waste-free.