Ohio Mulch, headquartered in Columbus, is applying for funding from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources that would give its U.S. Route 42 facility the ability to compost food waste.

Ohio Mulch, headquartered in Columbus, is applying for funding from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources that would give its U.S. Route 42 facility the ability to compost food waste.

Delaware County commissioners endorsed the grant application, which would upgrade the Ohio Mulch compost facility at 883 U.S. Route 42 to include food waste composting. The facility currently composts yard waste and animal bedding.

The county would act as a funding conduit. The grant would give Ohio Mulch up to $250,000 for equipment. Ohio Mulch would provide $259,000 in matching funds. Kristin Chek, general counsel for Ohio Mulch, said Ohio Mulch plans to add seven full-time employees and three seasonal employees to accommodate the composting changes.

Commissioner Tommy Thompson said he strongly supports the grant application.

"We've become a throw-away society," he said.

Commissioner Ken O'Brien said he was concerned about the waste's transport to the facility, specifically regarding road load limits and the carbon emissions of the trucks used.

Refrigerated trailers and sealed containers would reduce odor, Chek said. She told O'Brien that she wasn't aware of the load limits and anticipated using only a handful of trucks.

Thompson said the trucks would travel primarily on state roads and said he didn't see a problem with load limits. "There's not going to be that much more wear and tear on the roads than we already have," he said.

She hopes to receive word about the grant in two weeks," Chek said. The facility could be composting food waste this summer.