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Back to the Roots Co-Founder, Nikhil Arora

  Broadcast in Food

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Back to the Roots (BTTR) was founded in 2009 by Alejandro Velez and Nikhil Arora during their last semester at UC Berkeley.  Two months away from graduation, and heading into the corporate world of investment banking & consulting, they came across the idea during a class lecture of being able to potentially grow gourmet mushrooms entirely on recycled coffee grounds. Inspired by the idea of turning waste into wages & fresh, local food, they experimented in Alex's fraternity kitchen, ultimately growing one test bucket of tasty oyster mushrooms on recycled coffee grounds.
 
Back to the Roots has since grown to create the Grow-Your-Own Mushroom Garden.
 
BTTR's Goals:
• Divert and reuse 1 million lbs of coffee grounds 
from the landfill
• Help customers grow over 250,000 lbs of their own 
fresh mushrooms
• Sustain 10 school gardens through our nutritious 
soil amendment donations
• Create 21 urban, green-collar jobs in the West 
Oakland community
 
Tags:
Back to the Roots
Nikhil Arora
mushroom kit
school gardening project
Barbara Howard
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