The Color of Summer

People often joke that Wisconsin only has two seasons: winter and road construction. While many kid about the long winters in the Badger State – and that has certainly been true this year – when we think of summer, we think not of orange construction barrels but of the color green. We think of green grass, of Northwoods foliage, of seasonal vegetables.

At Sendik’s, the color has taken on a new meaning as we’ve expanded our composting program in an effort to be even more “green.” In partnership with our friends at Waste Management, we began a composting pilot program last summer at our Germantown location. It worked so well, we were able to expand it to all of our stores last fall.

“The progress we’ve made with our compost program has been exciting to watch,” said family co-owner Ted Balistreri. “All of our stores are now composting because we think it’s the right thing to do. We want to be good neighbors in the communities we serve, and we hope to continue to increase the amount of waste we can keep out of our landfills.”

As you may have read on our blog previously, Sendik’s employees now segregate unwanted produce and plants for recycling, including flowers, fruits and vegetables past their prime and trimmings from our in-store food preparation. Those materials are then separated in designated carts and collected by Waste Management in a Rotopress. The Rotopress vehicle – one of only five in all of North America – is ideally suited for collecting food waste because it is sealed to contain odors and liquid and continually moves the material forward to ensure even weight distribution.

After being mixed with yard debris, our waste – which used to end up in landfills – decomposes into a rich, uniform soil additive that Waste Management supplies to a leading lawn care company for sale to consumers. This program allows us to keep much of our waste out of landfills every month. Since the program launch, we’ve been able to compost more than 425 tons of organics.

“Sendik’s is blazing a trail that others will want to follow,” said Waste Management’s Joel Meyer.  “They were willing to take on the risks and challenges that come with innovation because the environmental benefits are so fantastic.”

General, News | May 3rd, 2013