|Full room of attentive attendees|
Ei Chair Scott Seydel opened the meeting with a warm welcome and a reminder the meeting follows the Chatham House Rule. Following introductions, Ei founder Holly Elmore gave the Annual Ei Year in Review presentation. In her opening slide, Holly summarized the past and current years as follows:
2012: Year of Accomplishments | Completions - in late 2012 the Zero Waste Zones were sold to the National Restaurant Association catapulting Ei into a major metamorphosis.The ZWA Blog article, The NRA Acquires ZWZ, announces the monumental acquisition.
2013: Year of Transitions | Introductions - until fall 2013 Ei flowed within the metamorphosis stage. As the year drew to a close, the three-platforms approach for Ei initiatives emerged. The IMPACT Blog, Ei Emerges Strong from Metamorphosis, introduced the three platforms: Water Use | Toxicity, Recycling Refinement and Product Stewardship.
2014: Year of Foundations | Evolutions - in 2014 the platforms were grounded with initiative launches and supporting taglines.Within her presentation, Holly gave an overview of each platform, initiative launches and future plans. In addition, Holly's presentation gave a road map of the action-packed meeting agenda. The following recaps the meeting presentations in a three-platform format.
Water Use | Toxicity: The Water Footprint: the new sustainability standard
|Ei Chair Scott Seydel with|
Chuck Riegle of Tomra
|Holly & Wayne at the|
|Joe & Holly @ post-mtg dinner|
Recycling Refinement: Moving beyond landfill diversion
|Louis Herrera ( Hilex Poly) &|
Doug Kunnemann (NW)
|Tim with GWCC executives|
showing the LEED placque
The GWCC is the World's Largest LEED Certified Convention Center
“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.”groundbreaking compostable packaging provision in the ten-year airport concessionaire contracts. During the 18-month contract implementation time frame, concessionaires were operating in a grace period for complying with the contract provision.
|Vendor Fair sign in|
With the contract roll-out period complete, ATL is activating the compostable packaging contract provision. In spring 2013, Liza Milagro joined the ATL team as zero waste coordinator and later was promoted to senior sustainability planner. Liza is responsible for activating the ATL compostable packaging contract provision.
On October 22, ATL hosted the greeningATL SFCI Vendor Fair to facilitate program roll-out assistance. Well attended by concessionaires, the fair's vendors educated operators on the ample packaging options available to meet the contract provision. Ei Partners Ken Fraser of EcoProducts and Rick Lombardo of NaturBag represented the SFCI Team at the vendor fair - thanks!
During her presentation, Liza announced the contract provision grace period ends with a tiered approach:
- January 15, 2015, for non-branded food and beverage packaging
- Summer 2015, for branded food and beverage packaging to allow for printing conversion
The ZWA Blog article, Atlanta Airport's Leadership Role in Compostable Food & Beverage Packaging, gives a detailed history of the compostable packaging provision culminating in the SFCI Vendor Fair.
After a synopsis of the Ei | ATL partnership and history of the contract provision, Doug introduced Liza for an update on ATL's sustainability achievements and future plans. The GLF campus-wide installation and the compostable contract provision were prominent in Liza's presentation.
|Ken & Rick with Liza at the|
SFCI Vendor Fair
Under new leadership, ATL announced a powerful goal: greenest airport in the world. On her Policies Create Change slide, Liza listed the following ATL policies recently or soon-to-be-issued: Sustainability, Zero Waste, Climate Action, and Green Infrastructure.
As he concluded the session, Doug announced post-consumer food waste is the 2014 | 2015 SFCI stated focus. Integral to post-consumer food waste is food & beverage packaging and contaminants within the food waste stream. The ZWA Blog article, SFCI targets post-consumer food waste, announced the focus along with SFCI Pilot updates.
BPI-Certified compostable food & beverage packaging decompose in windrow or covered aerated static pile composting systems within the applicable American Society for Testing & Materials (ASTM) Standards. However, the ASTM Standards & BPI Certification criteria do not address how compostable packaging fares through anaerobic digesters (AD).
|Steve during his presentation|
photo courtesy of Melissa Selem
Doug introduced Steve Davies, NW director public affairs, who presented Perspective: Bioplastics & Anaerobic Digestion. After a brief overview of bioplastics, Steve gave a detailed AD introduction in three areas: overview of the landscape, the basics, and system types & how bioplastics integrate.
As an industry leader, NW is committed to driving public policy, legislation and facilitating food waste systems that benefit the entire value stream, including the soil and energy resources.
Ei Partner HMSHost is an industry leader willing to pioneer new sustainable operating practices that ground into standard practices. Devon Ray, HMSHost senior contracting manager, presented on HMSHost's sustainability commitment, successes and future plans.
Within her presentation, Devon noted ATL HMSHost operations anticipate $48.000 in cost-savings due to GLF installations in concession outlets with kitchen exhaust systems. The HMSHost Las Vegas operations are next in line for GLF installation; a national installation rollout is in the planning stages.
|Milk jug bale|
The HMSHost presentation was the perfect segue to the two Charlotte-oriented presentations. Concord Mills (CM) serves at the SFCI - Shopping Mall Pilot; HMSHost operates the CM food court under a concessions lease.
Kim Charick, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region IV environmental scientist, educated the Ei Partners on the EPA Food Recovery Challenge (FRC) and the Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte Grant to the Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC). Ei is a subgrantee on the grant via a contract with the SPC.
|Ei introduces Kim to the|
GWCC team re: FRC
The ZWA Blog article, EPA Food Recovery Challenge: Region IV launches FRC in hospitality sector, gives a program overview; the Ei Joins the EPA Food Recovery Challenge article details Ei's role in the program launch.
Throughout the annual meeting, Holly explained how the EPA Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte Grant influenced and contributed to Ei initiatives underway.
The grant was the catalyst for the SPC joining the Ei Strategic Ally program via a formal Memorandum of Understanding. In addition, the grant team Charlotte visits spawned Ei work complementary to the grant. The ZWA Blog article, Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte, NC, details the grant goal, objectives and tasks.
|Grant Team during composting tour |
at Earth Farms
In March the grant team visited Charlotte for an action-packed agenda filled with meetings, tours and strategy sessions. The ZWA Blog article, Charlotte focuses on food waste with EPA grant support, is a recap of the excellent visit.
Kim ended her presentation by announcing the grant was extended another year WITH additional funds!
With Mecklenburg County Government (MCG) a grant partner, Kim's grant presentation flowed into the introduction to Laurette Hall, MCG environmental manager, waste reduction. The strong Ei | Charlotte | MCG relationship was evident in PPT slides leading up to Laurette's podium time. It was an honor Laurette accepted the invitation to attend and speak at the annual meeting.
|Sarah, Laurette & Kim at the|
Wallace Farms composting tour
In July the Ei Team invested in a Charlotte visit to explore opportunities and strategize on next steps. The ZWA Blog article, Ei Charlotte Visit: Busy, Productive & FUN!, chronicles the visit. During the total eight-hour drive time, the SMAT - Sustainable Materials ACTION Team - was formed, website copy written and Ei Partner Sarah Martell of Innovia Films named Chair.
... and Sarah was next on the agenda to introduce SMAT! With ACTION a key word in SMAT, Sarah's presentation included photos from the Charlotte visit along with SFCI - ATL and SFCI - GA Dome tours. The entire SMAT membership attended the meeting!
- Sarah Martell, Innovia Films - Chair
- Wendell Simonson, EcoProducts
- Rick Lombardo, NaturBags
- Grant Braasch, NatureWorks (Doug represented Grant at the meeting)
- Kim Charick, EPA Region IV
|SMAT members Rick Lombardo,|
Ken Fraser & Wendell Simonson
@ the reception
The overriding purpose of SMAT is to provide materials expertise to support the SFCI Pilots, S-SMRT, the EPA grant and other Ei initiatives within the Recycling Refinement platform. Future action plans include:
- Post-consumer food waste collection white paper focused on industry best practices in the following areas: sorting stations & signage, staff training, educational materials and engagement.
- Boulder Ei Partner Tours slated for late spring | summer sponsored by SMAT members.
Following the SMAT introduction, Holly took the podium to educate the Ei Partners on the S-SMRT and the Atlanta city-wide pilot. S-SMRT epitomizes one of the common phrases Holly uses in speaking engagements:
Ei is a creator, an incubator.
Ei determines what could be done that is not being done and gets it done.
Ei brings the possible out of impossible.
Ei identifies pioneers and creates heroes.
"Contract language is a key element that sets the appropriate expectations of all parties involved in any zero waste initiative. Zero waste is a team effort that requires every party to be on the same page."
|Ei Board Members|
Pauline Reynolds & Greg Chafee
- Engage the power of consumer demand
- Work in partnership with the supply chain
- "Trash" within the supply chain will be clear once the S-SMRT is activated and replicated
|Joe Salpietra & Jim Harrell with|
one of the large photo prints