GreenTown Los Altos

Get the Dirt Tour: Food Scraps Processing by Mission Trail


May 2018


by Linda Ziff

On GreenTown Los Altos’ Get the Dirt Tour, participating Greentowners and guests learned that Mission Trails owner Louie Pellegrini is drawing from his past to plan for the future. As a third generation garbage professional, Louie remembers the thousands of pigs his grandfather raised. Today it is estimated that approximately 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted globally each year with most of it going to landfill.  As a “garbage man’s” solution to the sustainable management of food scraps, Mission Trail has developed patented technologies to convert food scraps to dry animal food. Tour participants had the opportunity to visit the Garden City Sanitation Facility of this SAFE (Sustainable Alternative Feed Enterprises) process. Although not yet available in Los Altos, you can learn more at

With the China ban on accepting less recyclable material from the US, Louie reported that about 40% of our recyclables now are not accepted. This ban mostly affects mixed paper, because it is heavier than the recycled plastics. How can you help?

  • contact organizations that send you junk mail and ask to be removed from their lists.
  • use brown cardboard for mulching in your yard.
  • read newspapers and magazines online.

The good news is that Los Altos is tops in the County on our diversion rate, keeping material out of the landfill. Hooray for Los Altos residents!


Mission Train Tour 1


Mission Trail Tour 2

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