. New and Improved: Transform Your Food Scraps into Poultry Meal with Mill’s Innovative Bin by Daybreak

Mill, a food waste startup, is releasing an entirely new design of its bin that grinds and dries scraps, turning it into compost-like grounds that can feed plants and chickens alike. Now, the heating elements surround the entire bin and the fan blows hot air through the food waste as it’s being processed. That program continues nationwide, and a standards body recently certified Mill’s feed product, which should help the startup speed adoption among interested farmers. “We’ve actually closed the loop in Phoenix,” Rogers said. Mill may have already diverted 1 million pounds of food waste from landfills (and the associated greenhouse gasses), but it’s not enough for him.

Mill, a food waste startup, is revolutionizing the way we think about composting with their innovative new design – an upgraded bin that grinds and dries scraps, turning them into eco-friendly grounds that can feed both plants and chickens.

This new and improved bin may look similar to the previous model, with its sleek design that blends seamlessly into any kitchen decor, but according to Mill co-founder Matt Rogers, the changes on the inside are what truly sets this product apart.

“The inside is completely redesigned,” he explained to TechCrunch. “It’s more energy-efficient and significantly faster.”
Previously, the bin’s grinding and drying cycle could take up to 20 hours to complete, but with the new design, Rogers claims it will be completed by breakfast time.

“Even my wife, a tough customer, was surprised by how quick it is,” Rogers added. “This not only benefits consumers like ourselves, but also opens up opportunities for other applications, such as offices or small-scale commercial use.”

The internal changes include turning the grinding paddles on their sides and adding an additional axle to ensure complete coverage of the bin. The drying function, which used to consist of heating elements below the bin, has also been rethought. Now, the heating elements surround the entire bin and a fan blows hot air through the food waste while it is being processed. And to combat any potential odors, a charcoal filter remains on the back of the bin.

Mill initially gained recognition for its partnership with the U.S. Postal Service, which allowed mail carriers to collect the compost-like grounds and send them to a processing facility where they would be refined into chicken feed. This program is still ongoing nationwide and has recently been certified by a standards body for its high-quality feed product, which will help speed up its adoption among interested farmers.

But Mill is not stopping there. They are also exploring other avenues to get their grounds back into the food system. In Phoenix, a nearby farm called R.City is now collecting food waste from Mill households and using it in their fields. This service includes maintenance, grounds pickup, and four deliveries of compost annually. For an additional cost, customers can even receive a farm box filled with fresh produce. Mill has also added a few more farms to their list of partners.

“We’ve successfully closed the loop in Phoenix,” Rogers proudly stated. “Your food waste is now helping to create more food for the local community.”

Initially only available as a subscription, Mill has recently added the option to purchase the bin outright for $999 – a price that carries over to the new model. However, the subscription cost has been adjusted to $360 annually (a decrease of $36), but has increased to $50 for month-to-month billing (up from $45). For those who are still on the fence, Mill also offers a 30-day free trial.

In Phoenix, the pricing and services may vary slightly, as the U.S. Postal Service is not involved in that region.

Unlike many other climate tech companies that target businesses, Mill is primarily focused on selling to consumers. This sets them apart as a bit of an outlier, but co-founders Rogers and Harry Tannenbaum have previous experience with consumer hardware through their successful venture with Nest. Their expertise in assembling consumer hardware-focused teams may explain how they were able to release a revamped version of the bin less than a year after the initial launch.

According to Rogers, Mill has been met with overwhelming success. The first batch of 10,000 bins quickly sold out, and the product’s net promoter score is “north of 70”.

“Of all the products I’ve worked on in my career, it might be the best product I’ve ever worked on,” Rogers boasted.

But even with a great product, long-term success is not guaranteed. However, Mill’s financial backing of over $232 million, according to PitchBook, and their consistent revenue streams should help them overcome the early-stage challenges that often hinder startups.

Rogers is a fast-talking, energetic individual, which undoubtedly contributes to Mill’s fast-paced progress. But beyond his enthusiasm lies a sense of urgency. Mill may have already diverted more than 1 million pounds of food waste from landfills (and the associated greenhouse gas emissions), but it’s not enough for Rogers.

“The emissions curve is not bending fast enough,” he expressed. “We need to do more.”

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Kira Kim

Kira Kim is a science journalist with a background in biology and a passion for environmental issues. She is known for her clear and concise writing, as well as her ability to bring complex scientific concepts to life for a general audience.

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