Vermont's Jay Peak Talks Trash; To Divert 40 Tons Of Food Scraps
The big news at Vermont's Jay Peak this winter is trash. Specifically, the 40 tons of food scraps that instead of winding up in Vermont’s only landfill, will be diverted by the resort and turned into compost for the numerous gardens found around Jay Peak. It’s part of a statewide initiative that Jay Peak’s helping to show others how simple it is to “close the loop.”
Jay Peak started last spring working with a local farm that provides compost collection services and to teach staff how to compost. “It’s like what we all did 20 years ago when we had to learn how to recycle,” Jay Peak’s JJ Toland told SnoCountry.com.
“The back of the house is easy to start with,” Toland told us. “With eight restaurants and two large cafeterias, we’ve been working to educate servers, bus staff, and food prep people to divert compostable food waste to the compost bins.”
This winter, the front of the house efforts begin, with signage and bins to encourage guests to separate their waste into recycling, food waste, and trash.
Toland feels that encouraging guests to compost won’t be a difficult step, considering that people have the ethos that Vermont is a green state.
“It’s incumbent on us from a financial standpoint to share our recycling goals with our guests,” Toland added. “We’ll be charged by our composting facility if a beer bottle or plastic wrap ends up in the composting.”
Jay Peak will “close the loop” next spring when enriched compost is delivered that will help grow the acres of gardens that grow most of the greens and vegetables served at the resort.
The Vermont Legislature passed universal recycling unanimously in 2012 to help reduce the amount of reusable and recyclable material (including compostables) that goes to the landfill, saving resources and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The law calls for a phased-in ban on landfill disposal of listed recyclables, leaf and yard debris, clean wood debris, and food scraps.
Photos: Top: Black Dirt Farm transforms food scraps from their community into nutrient-rich eggs, premium agricultural grade compost and vegetable crops (Black Dirt Farm); Left -- If diners at Jay Peak's Clubhouse Grille don't clean their plates, food scraps will be composted for next year's gardens (Jay Peak).