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Monday, April 22, 2013

SFCI Atlanta Airport Pilot: ACTION Resumes!

In a holding pattern since last summer, the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Atlanta Airport Pilot returns to ACTION mode. When the SFCI pilot launched in June, 2011, the SFCI Team moved into immediate, powerful action. See the ZWZ Blog post, Atlanta Airport - First SFCI Pilot!, for details on the pilot announcement, including the national team members.

With impeccable launch timing, the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport was in the midst of the concessionaire RFP - request for proposal - for the entire airport. The City of Atlanta Office of Sustainability and Department of Aviation team, led by Michael Cheyne - Atlanta Airport director of asset management & sustainability - made the bold, courageous and successful move to include the following provision in the RFP: 
Concessionaire shall use compostable serviceware along with consumer facing packaging and source separate all food service wastes for direct transport to off airport composting facilities.
For additional information on the ground-breaking contract provision, visit the ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Airport Makes a Bold Sustainable Statement

The first SFCI Team task was preparation of the HJAIA Compostable Foodservice Ware Packet consisting of introduction, fact sheet and frequently asked question sections. In April, 2012 the info packet was issued as a downloadable document via the ZWA Blog post, Compostable Packaging Info Packet. Exemptions and exclusions were specifically addressed in the amended document announced in the ZWA Blog post, Exemptions | Exclusions Added to the Airport Info Packet.

Next on the agenda was development of a Material Usage Form to track contract provision compliance. With form elements complete, SFCI Team member Brenda Platt with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance is working with the City of Atlanta IT department on an on-line, paperless document for concessionaire completion.

Other than the Materials Usage Form, the SFCI Atlanta Airport Team went into a holding pattern in June, 2012. Due to the phase-in nature of the new contract, Concourses A - E & T are hybrids of concessionaires operating under the prior and new contracts throughout 2013.

April, 2012 tour group
see Ei FB album for names
Terminal F - the International Terminal - opened in May, 2012 under the new contract with Ei Partner & SFCI Team Member HMSHost the concourse concessionaire. Prior to opening, the SFCI Team toured the under-construction facility.  See the ZWA Blog post, SFCI Team Tours New ATL Airport Int'l Concourse, supported by the Ei FB album. 04-12-12 SFCI Team Tour of ATL Airport for a tour recap.

With the Atlanta Airport late 2012 shift to Republic Services for their waste & recycling services, Michael Cheyne requested a tour of the Airport's recycling stream destination. Republic delivers the Airport recycling stream to the Pratt Recycling MRF (material recovery facility) in East Point. With schedules flowing, Elemental Impact Chair Scott Seydel joined and Myles Cohen, Pratt Recycling president, led the late March tour with Republic associates attending.

In addition Ei orchestrated a Wilbros Organic Recovery & Biofuels facility visit for Michael. As of this post writing, Wilbros is the only composting site in GA permitted to accept food waste that is accepting food waste. For details on the tours, see the ZWA Blog post, "Seeing is Believing" - the magic of tours. The Ei FB albums, 03-25-13 Pratt MRF Tour and 03-29-13 Wilbros Organic Recovery & Biofuels Tour, include tour pictorial recaps.

SFCI Team during Int' l Concourse Tour
see Ei FB album for names
With the International Terminal nearing its one-year anniversary, the SFCI Team reunited on April 17 for a facility tour. Fact finding in nature, the tour included the terminal loading dock area along with food court front & back-of-the-house operations. Thank you to Kyle Mastin, Atlanta Airport concessionaire manager, for handling the security escort and loading dock tour and Tim Slaney, HMSHost senior director, for the food court operations tour.

For a tour pictorial recap, see the Ei FB album, 04-17-13 SFCI Team Tour - ATL Airport Int'l Concourse.

In early May, the SFCI Atlanta Airport Team will tour the Pratt MRF followed by a zero waste strategy session dedicated to action. It is thrilling to move back in action mode - stay tuned!

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