Olmsted County

At a Glance


Government/Public Administration

Project Types

Data Analysis, Engagement and Behavior Change, Food and Agriculture




Rochester, MN


Lynsey Sammons identified strategies to reduce the impact of food waste in Olmsted County.


Olmsted County enlisted Climate Corps Fellow, Lynsey Sammons, to get a complete look at food waste and identify opportunities to reduce food waste incineration. To achieve this, Lynsey focused on learning about current food waste reduction and diversion efforts and researched best practice models across the U.S.

Utilizing all data gathered, Lynsey provided recommendations for how Olmsted County and its residents can support and expand the infrastructure of sustainable food waste management.


Lynsey approached this challenge through:

  • Stakeholder Engagement: Lynsey worked closely with local stakeholders to build a comprehensive inventory of past and present food waste reduction efforts within Olmsted County. Lynsey also interviewed representatives of best practice models, which provided insight into effectively prioritizing efforts and implementing food waste reduction projects.
  • Data Analysis: Lynsey gathered resources and analyzed technical guides and implementation toolkits to identify appropriate strategies for the County to work toward food waste reduction goals.
  • Provide recommendations: Utilizing all information gathered, Lynsey provided the County with recommendations to support food waste efforts and established community outreach and education as a top priority. Lynsey also created guides for residents, businesses, and schools to actively engage in food waste reduction practices. 

Potential Impact

Implementing Lynsey’s proposed mix of prevention and reduction strategies should significantly reduce the amount of food waste sent to incineration and reduce the impact of food waste in Olmsted County. Adopting community engagement and education resources and distributing food waste guides created by Lynsey should reduce the generation of food waste.

Following Lynsey’s recommendations to improve the infrastructure and support local stakeholders will further divert food waste from incineration. 

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