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Wednesday, November 23, 2011


The Sustainable Food Court Initiative, an Elemental Impact Task Force in partnership with the National Restaurant Association, is in ACTION mode! 

In June the first SFCI Pilot at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport was announced.  On October 31 Michael Cheyne, Atlanta Airport Director of Asset Management and Sustainability, accepted a 2011 Going Green Airport Award for the SFCI Pilot.  See the June ZWZ Blog post, Atlanta Airport - First SFCI Pilot, for the pilot announcement and the October post, Atlanta Airport SFCI Pilot Wins National Award, for details on the award.

Ei Chair Scott Seydel, Holly & Chris
with the Going Green Airport Award
A Pilot ACTION Committee is formed with three subcommittees:  Baseline & Metrics Reporting, Sustainable Packaging and Front-of-the-House Recycling Bins.  The baseline is determined for Concourse T, the first airport food court to participate in the pilot.  An informational packet on compostable packaging is in process to give to airport concessionaires.  Once complete the package will be available on-line for download on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and Ei websites.

In addition CleanRiver is spearheading an overall SFCI Communication committee with initial focus on building Ei website content for segue into a separate SFCI site. The  urls, .com & .net are secured.  Communicating SFCI progress and success through blog posts, social media networks and other mediums are on the committee agenda.

Additional pilots|projects are under exploration in Charlotte, Atlanta and the D.C. area with announcements anticipated in first quarter 2012.  SFCI efforts go beyond pilots with projects planned for the Tampa and Charlotte Airports where HMSHost has the concessionaire contracts.

Hilex Poly Tour End
SFCI impact extends to the entire pilot facility.  Simon Property Group, Hilex Poly and Ei are exploring a plastic film recycling pilot at Concord Mills in Charlotte. See the ZWZ Blog post, Simon Property Group Embarks on Zero Waste Initiatives, where malls are experiencing a tremendous increase in plastic film generated due to retail clothing packaged individually in clean, virgin plastic film.  The ZWZ Blog post, Getting a Handle on Plastic Film Recycling, gives an overview of Simon's tour of the Hilex Poly recycling plant in N. Vernon, IN.  The basic education is in place for movement into a pilot project.

A powerful SFCI Team is working together on the hows of bringing zero waste initiatives to food court operations.  The Team includes:

o   Chris Moyer, NRA ConSERVE Program Director
o   Doug Kunnemann, NatureWorks Business Segment Director

o   Susan Montgomery, Elemental Impact

Trade Associations/Non-Profits:
Industry Suppliers:
Foodservice Operators:
  • HMSHost
Property Owners|Managers:
  • Simon Property Group
Those interested in joining may contact Holly Elmore, Ei Founder.  Note minimum Ei Gold Sponsor status is required to join the SFCI Team.  Quarterly SFCI update calls are open to any interested parties.  Please contact Holly to be included on the distribution list.

A common phrase during SFCI working sessions is "if it was easy, it would already be done".  It  takes optimism, innovation and perseverance to break through the boundaries of what at times seems impossible.  Kudos to the phenomenal SFCI Team for taking on an extraordinary challenge. 

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