Industrial/Organic raises $1.3 million to ferment your food waste into sellable stuff

The Brooklyn startup's raise is backed by hometown VC Brooklyn Bridge Ventures.

Urban farming.

(Image via Smart Cities NYC)

Nature, man. It’s a powerful force.

We don’t get too much contact with it here in Brooklyn, but that hasn’t stopped a host of city startups from trying to rethink our relationship with the soil.

The latest is Industrial/Organic, a Brooklyn and soon-to-be Newark-based company which just raised a seed round of $1.3 million led by hometown venture firm Brooklyn Bridge Ventures.

“When I funded the company, it was little more than a science project in a garage in Brooklyn and soon, they’ll open up a waste processing facility in Newark—one that didn’t require tens of millions of dollars to setup and also won’t pollute the local neighborhood with odor,” wrote Brooklyn Bridge Ventures founder Charlie O’Donnell in a post last week. “It won’t throw off dangerous gases, and yes, the process will make a profit.”

According to O’Donnell, the company’s main products will be organic fertilizers and cleaning products.

Industrial/Organic works by a process of rapid fermentation of food waste, the stuff you scrape off your plate before washing it or the eggshells you toss in the trash can.

“Food waste is 75% moisture, which we draw out in a multi-step process following a rapid biological digestion that sterilizes and preserves organic matter,” according to the company. “This byproduct is first used for energy generation and then cleaned for reuse.¬†We see a future where this reclaimed water is substituted for agricultural and industrial use. The leftover solids are processed into an organic fertilizer that is microbially active, providing nutrients, probiotics and organic matter to soils.”

Pretty neat.

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