Kimpton Encourage Restaurants to Compost

In honor of Earth Day, Businessweek.com reported many restaurants across the country are trying to do their part to be less wasteful.

“Composting — a natural process in which food and other organic scraps are decomposed into fertile soil — has long been a mainstay of farms and backyards. But few restaurants have the space or time to compost their own waste. And so they typically pay to have it disposed of in landfills along with the rest of their trash.

But as communities have struggled to reduce their waste, pressure has mounted on the restaurant industry to do its part.”

Some cities like San Francisco and Seattle have mandated composting, but didn’t have the services to pick it up.
Some companies that provide pick-ups include EcoMovement, Compost Cab and EnviRelation.

“San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels & Restaurant Group has encouraged all of their 53 restaurants — including those outside the Bay Area — to compost. It isn’t always possible. Only 35 of their properties have programs at this time.

“The biggest challenge is finding someone who can haul it away,” says Frank Kawecki, senior director of operations for Kimpton. “It’s usually some guy in a truck. It’s very grassroots and local.”

…Last year, Washington D.C.’s Kimpton properties alone composted more than 408,000 pounds of food scrap.

Despite trepidations about smell, staff training and pest nuisance, when composting is available most restaurants find that it is simple.”

Examiner.com reports “Kimpton is one of the best hotel chains for eclectic and eco-travel in urban cities. Their EarthCare® program offers guests a luxurious experience while practicing sustainability: adding recycling bins in rooms, serving organic coffee/tea and wine, and utilizing green cleaning products. Even their signature restaurants often serve local and organic cuisine.

This week, however, they really step up their efforts to promote sustainability as Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants launch EarthCare® Week, April 15-22, 2011, honoring its 30 year commitment to environmental responsibility and care. Kimpton’s DC & Alexandria restaurants and hotels will celebrate in a variety of ways, from cocktail parties to recycled art exhibits. In keeping with Kimpton’s commitment to supporting the community, many of the events will raise funds for local environmental organizations.”

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This blog and its accompanying Twitter account have been established as social media learning tools for the Internal Communications and Employee Engagement class at Columbia College Chicago. Through this blog, we will share our observations about current events, change management and employee communications theory, and the application of social media in shaping employee engagement.
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