Earth Day is just around the corner. What began as an American movement in 1970, has now turned into “the largest secular observance in the world, marked by more than a billion people every year as a day of action to change human behavior and create global, national, and local policy changes.” – earthday.org
Of course, sustainability practices shouldn’t be implemented on just one day of the entire year. Sustainability should be a lifestyle choice, and fortunately, it’s a simple switch to make. Whether you are looking to make more sustainable choices in your personal life or in your program, we have put together a few ways to make the switch in honor of Earth Day.
Minimize the use of paper in your program
With everything going digital these days, it’s a breeze to go paperless. For example, if you find that you are still using clipboards and pencils during routine inspections, try and search for a solution that will track compliance digitally. You might find that you have binders full of nutrition labels, when you could be using an online solution to store them – not only keeping you sustainable but also making them easier to access during audits! Another way you can minimize the use of paper is by utilizing digital menus instead of printing them out to send home.
Avoid single-use items in your personal life
With single-use plastics on the rise thanks to COVID-19, it can be hard to completely eliminate using plastics altogether, but avoiding them when you can isn’t impossible. Instead of drinking coffee from styrofoam cups at work, use your own mug or thermos! You can even use your own water bottle versus using plastic cups or plastic bottles. Maybe you are someone who likes to bring lunch from home, so instead of using Zip-Loc bags, you can use reusable and resealable storage bags or Tupperware that can easily be washed. You can even make the switch to using reusable shopping bags. Not only is this better for the environment, these bags can carry more and also don’t break as easily as paper or plastic!
Carpool with coworkers
If you live in a small town or live in the same neighborhood as your fellow coworkers, why not share a ride together and save on the number of emissions you put out? Especially if you share the same route and have to be at work at the time. This is also a really fun way to connect with your coworkers more
Reduce the amount of food that goes to waste
No one can predict the future, but you can make informed decisions about how much food you are producing even if you aren’t a tenured menu planner. With the right tools, you can use data from the past to decide how much food you should be making on any given day based on what your menus look like. You can track any potential leftovers so that you can improve your production counts for next time, or even designate certain items to be used again!
Recycle as much as possible
This one is huge, especially for the times you do use paper or single-use plastics. By recycling plastic, paper, cardboard, or aluminum, you can prevent those items from ending up in a landfill somewhere. Before you begin recycling though, do your research and find some nearby recycling plants and see exactly what it is they will recycle. This will ensure you aren’t contaminating items that can be repurposed, otherwise, they could still end up in a landfill.
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