We’re all excited for the upcoming holiday, but let’s also be conscious of our environmental impact. According to the USDA, Americans will throw away more that 200 million pounds of edible turkey meat this Thanksgiving holiday. Here are a few ways to prevent the wasteful and tragic aftermath of Thanksgiving.
- Eat local and/or organic. Many Thanksgiving foods like squash, potatoes, and apples are seasonal in the U.S. during the fall and can be purchased from a local farm. Local farms reduce the miles that the food has to travel to get to your kitchen, reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Some local farms are certified organic, but you should ask the farm if they have organic practices. You can also purchase organic produce from a grocery store. Organic produce protects farm workers from harmful chemicals and is safer for humans. Most importantly though, local and organic food tastes better!
- Don’t waste food! Americans waste 40% of all food produced in the United States according to the NRDC. You could give out leftovers to guests, eat it as breakfast, or even compost and transform food waste to benefit your garden. “Begin with the Bin” has a great resource for composting leftover food.
- Use reusable plates, silverware, glasses, and napkins. This is better for the environment, and no one likes cutting turkey with a plastic knife and having gravy soak through paper plates.
- Eat less meat. The meat industry is the largest source of methane gas, which is a major contributor to climate change. You don’t have to be a vegetarian, but try having less meat on the plate and filling the rest of it with healthy sides like squash and green beans! You could also consider purchasing a smaller turkey.
- Drink tap water. Americans spend $18 billion on bottled water, which creates mountains of plastic that will stay on this earth for a long time. If you are concerned about the water quality, investing in a filter for your tap water is a wiser alternative.
On September 29th, Tufts Dining achieved the 3-star certification from the Green Restaurant Association (GRA), a nonprofit organization that recognizes food service providers for their work to become environmentally sustainable.
GRA rates on a 4-star scale in seven categories including:
- Water efficiency
- Waste reduction and recycling
- Sustainable/durable goods and building materials
- Sustainable food
- Energy use
- Reusable and environmentally-preferable disposables
- Pollution/chemical reduction.
Tufts is the first university to earn 10 GreenPoints™in each category and receive the 3-star certification for all ten of its dining locations on campus, and the first GRA-certified food service provider in Medford/Somerville!
Some of the changes Tufts Dining made include switching to low-flow aerators and pre-rise sprays, changing over to LED lighting in Dewick-MacPhie, and launching Rise Craft Pizza at Hotung Café which features environmentally friendly pizza boxes.
Tufts Dining plans to continue its sustainability initiatives and push for as many 4-star locations as possible. They will start by updating dish machines with a much more energy and water efficient machine in Mugar Hall.
Oversee operation of the multi-farmer World PEAS Food Hub distributing fresh, locally-grown produce throughout the Merrimack Valley and Boston area. Operations include a 400-share Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, multiple wholesale accounts and a variety of community partnerships serving low-income and food insecure individuals. Goals include growth of the operation by expanding market channels and diversifying CSA offerings, increasing number of food access partnerships and establishing an institutional marketing program.
Are you seeking an internship in sustainability that will provide you with broad exposure to a corporate sustainability platform? Are you interested in working at a fast-moving, entrepreneurial CPG company that is part of a global leader in their category? Are you passionate about saving the world? Stonyfield has an exciting opportunity in Londonderry, NH for a dynamic individual to gain experience as a Sustainability Intern. As an intern, you will have the opportunity to demonstrate and expand your leadership skills, work on important real-world challenges, and collaborate with some of the best in the business. During the summer, you will make a contribution and help Stonyfield demonstrate that doing good can be good for business.
The duties of the Environmental and Sustainability intern will be focused on supporting the execution of the environmental/sustainability capital projects and assisting with environmental regulatory programs. This position will be based at Green Bay Home Office location. This is a paid, year-round internship. Schreiber Foods offers flexible scheduling to accommodate your class schedule. This position will start Fall 2016.