Sunshine Organics and Compost, LLC (“Sunshine” or “the Company”), the first commercial food waste composting facility in Duval County, is thrilled to announce that it has been awarded a $4.9 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development (RD) Fertilizer Production Expansion Program (FPEP) to become a state-of-the-art facility with efficient equipment and a delivery service to serve more farmers.
As the first ever commercial food waste composter in Duval County, this grant will enable Sunshine Organics and Compost to provide innovative composting and biochar products that reduce the use of chemical fertilizers and improve soil quality. The expansion of the facility will put Jacksonville on the map in the compost world and revolutionize the agricultural sector.
"Our goal has always been to make a positive impact on the agricultural sector, the environment, and the local community," said Mike Kelcourse, Founder of Sunshine Organics and Compost. "This grant is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our team, and we are excited to take our operations to the next level."
Sunshine's new delivery service will ensure that farmers in need of compost and biochar will receive timely and efficient delivery of these products, making it easier for them to reduce food waste in landfills and enhance soil health.
The importance of reducing food waste in landfills cannot be overstated. When food waste is dumped in landfills, it produces methane, a greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. By diverting food waste from landfills, Sunshine Organics and Compost is helping to mitigate climate change and promote environmental sustainability.
The sandy and swampy soil in Florida can be a challenge for farmers. However, by adding compost and biochar, Sunshine Organics and Compost will be able to help improve soil structure, increase water-holding capacity, and enhance nutrient retention, ultimately boosting crop yields and improving the health of Florida's agricultural sector.
The USDA FPEP grant program is aimed at expanding or bringing into operation new, independent domestic production capacity, pursuant to 15 U.S.C. 714c(b), to "make available materials and facilities required in connection with the production and marketing of agricultural commodities (other than tobacco)." The program is particularly interested in supporting projects that are in the later stages of development, technically feasible, financially viable, and that have already identified other sources of funding.
The USDA FPEP grant program recognizes the need for sustainable and innovative products that reduce the reliance on chemical fertilizers and enhance soil health. Sunshine Organics and Compost is proud to be at the forefront of this initiative and looks forward to making a positive impact on the agricultural sector, the environment, and the local community.
More information about the USDA FPEP grant program can be found here: https://www.rd.usda.gov/newsroom/news-release/usda-partners-farmers-increase-innovative-domestic-fertilizer-production-through-investing-america
About Sunshine Organics and Compost:
We are an American company located in Florida and expanding into the Southeast. The team at Sunshine Compost strives to be a truly sustainable business that is profitable, good for the people and planet too. A business rooted in community, dependability, environmental & social responsibility; Sunshine Compost seeks to not only divert food waste but to educate and build a community that sustains for generations to come. Our purpose is simple: turn food, agricultural, and forestry waste into nutrient-rich compost and biochar, and give it back to the soil. By doing so, we help local farms and backyard gardens grow healthier and more abundant produce. It's all about making our communities healthier, one compost pile at a time.
For more information about Sunshine Organics and Compost, please visit https://www.sunshineorganicsandcompost.com/
Chris Kelcourse, Co-Founder
Sunshine Organics and Compost