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Elementary Students Learn to Recycle at Lunch

Irmo, SC (WLTX)- Dutch Fork Elementary School received a $7,000 grant to help them recycle and re-purpose their food.

During lunch time, Emma Doremus hurries to finish her food, grabs a bucket labeled "landfill" and goes around collecting plastics, cups, and ketchup packets to recycle them.

As a fourth grader at Dutch Fork Elementary school she could teach a class on this process, "you just take plastic stuff and you dump it in the containers then they take it somewhere and they can make it into soil" she explained.

That soil then comes right back to the school garden where second graders plant vegetables. Those same plants are used in the cafeteria, and the cycle begins again.

By the end of this year Dutch Fork Elementary School is projected to reuse two tons of food waste.

These efforts have also saved the school some money. They went from using 27 trash bags a day in the cafeteria to 3.

"What they're doing in the cafeteria matters" says Amy Umberger, the resident scientist at Dutch Fork. "That’s probably the most exciting part is that they’re growing the food and trying them" she said.

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