Food wastes are produced worldwide in large quantities that could have potential to produce higher value products, including industrial adsorbents. The present work attempts valorization of food waste by CO₂ activation and functionalization through nitric acid and melamine treatment. The prepared porous materials were subjected to gas phase adsorption of CO₂ and benzene gases. The resultant highly porous carbon materials with surface area range from 797 to 1025 m²/g were synthesized showing uptake capacities of 4.41, 4.07, 4.18 and 4.36 mmol/g of CO₂ and 345, 305, 242.5 and 380.7 mg/g of C₆H₆ respectively for PyF515, PyF520, PyF715 and PyF720 in the absence of doped carbon matrix. Differential thermogravimetric (DTG) analysis showed the thermostability of the precursors to validate selected initial pyrolysis temperatures (500 and 700°C). C₆H₆ sorption lies mainly in the physisorption region for all adsorbents ensuring re-generation potential. PyF720 and PyF520 recorded the highest isosteric enthalpy of 64.4 kJ/mol and 48.7 kJ/mol respectively, despite the low degree of coverage of the latter. Thus, PyF515 and PyF720 demonstrated the potential for use as sustainable and cost effective adsorbents for benzene gas containment suitable for swing adsorption system.