Happy Earth Day – 10 Things We Do To Stay Green

04.22.2016

Categories: Behind The Scenes

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Happy Earth Day to everyone! As a Certified Green caterer, we strive to “walk the walk” of being green – and we LOVE doing it!

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Like most of you, we recycle our plastic, metal and paper. We grow and use all our own herbs and a lot of vegetables. We compost all our food waste and return that compost right back in the gardens. We source from local farms all around us such as; LoPresti’s, Maple Lane Farms and Full Heart Farm.

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However, there are a lot of things that go into being certified green. Many of which, you can replicate at your home or place of business. Below we will share 10 items we do that we know you can too!

1. Paperless Payroll and Time Tracking

No paper checks or time cards here! Everyone has a personal code to enter in the clock on the wall for checking in and out. Then, everyone receives their pay via direct deposit.

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We pay as many bills as we can online and do a lot of our paperwork online as well!

2. Reducing Water Usage

We placed aerators on all of our sinks and installed a “low flow” toilet for staff use.

Sink Aerator

We’ve lost count of all the gallons of water we have saved over the years!

3. No Idling Policy

Bringing the entire kitchen with us to an event, means we use big trucks and vans. When loading/unloading, we don’t leave the trucks running. We save gas and reduce the emissions this way, too!

Loading the truck

Still think it’s more gas-effective to leave your car idling instead of turning it off and re-starting it? The Mythbusters proved you wrong!

4. Salvaged Elements

A lot of the furniture in our Cookery, as well as a lot of the design elements we bring to events, we’ve salvaged from hand-me-downs, flea markets and more.

Butcher Block

The butcher block in our kitchen was made using pieces salvaged from our owner’s father’s home!

5. Double-Sided Copies and Printing

We have a copier/fax/scanner/printer that not only is energy efficient, but it’s pre-programed to do everything double-sided. So, when we do have to print, we use as little paper as possible.

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Any paper we are finished with gets cut or ripped (it’s therapeutic!) in half and used for all our memos and notes at all of our desks.

6. Seal Those Windows

We’ve installed film on all our windows that help insulate the building and use the sun to our advantage.

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It’s helps keep the heat in during the winter and the sun’s heat out in the summer!

7. Shared Calendars

Years ago, we had paper calendars everywhere. Everyone had them on their desks, in their pockets and we had FOUR different wall paper calendars we updated every time we had an appointment. We went to a shared calendar, attached to our email system, and now we all see everything in real-time. PLUS no more paper!

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We do still have one giant calendar on the wall in our Events Team space – it’s dry erase! We get to re-use it every year.

8. Annual Maintenance

We have a lot of equipment. A LOT of equipment. Keeping it clean and well maintained extends the life of the equipment and helps with energy usage.

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When a piece of equipment does reach the end of its usefulness, we take a trip to the scrap yard and hope it will become something even more useful in its next ‘life’.

9. Re-usable Towels/Napkins

The chefs do a lot of cleaning. A lot of wiping up. The amount of paper towels could fill a box truck. We changed over to using washable-towels in the kitchen and bathroom. We’d rather have a pile of laundry than see more trees disappear so we can wipe up a spill.

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The amazing folks at Falvy’s come every week to replenish our supply and keep us dry!

10. New Boxed Lunches

Recently we’ve been asked by some of our corporate clients to provide an up-scale boxed lunch for meetings and events. We’ve always been hesitant because of the disposables needed. We did a lot of research and found a company that provides us with completely compostable containers made out of plant fiber!

boxed lunch, compostable container

Pretty cool to think that 90 days after your meal, that the box will already be soil!

There you have it! Which of these do you think you’ll be able to replicate where you live/work? Looking for more tips, let us know – we love to share!

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