Composting is a Win-Win at Forman School - CulinArt Group

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Composting is a Win-Win at Forman School

LITCHFIELD, CONN., May 10, 2021—The composting program at Forman School does more than divert kitchen waste for use as fertilizer at a local farm. In exchange for supplying the compost, Forman partners with Chanticleer Acres, a nearby provider of garden kits and compost, to educate students via tours of the farm, lectures, and pop-up tastings on campus.

Chanticleer provides CulinArt dining services at Forman with bins into which students and kitchen workers deposit compostable scraps and leftovers, then picks them up once a week after the compost has spent some time being “processed” by chickens. “The chickens are the first to receive the waste,” explains Denee Danner, dir. of dining services for CulinArt. “They help to break down and mix the nitrogen-rich green matter. Simultaneously they add their manure to the compost and get their meal in the process!”

The farm employs windrow composting, which assembles compost in long rows with periodic turning, and then sells it on the open market. Deliveries from Forman to the farm began in late April. “I estimate that we will deliver 50 to 100 pounds per week of kitchen scraps in alignment with the Waste Not program,” says Danner. “Chef Darby Fitzgerald will be providing tastings with whatever fruit or vegetable is in season, and the farm will simultaneously educate the students and provide tours when possible.”

For example, a guest speaker from the farm visited the school in late April to explain the composting process, and students got to sample “some delicious earth vegan wraps,” Danner says.

Support for the composting program at the school is widespread. “The Head of School and his wife are thrilled because they have wanted to compost at Forman for years,” Danner adds. A student who leads a school sustainability group was the catalyst for the program, approaching Danner, who will attend all group meetings, with the idea to begin composting kitchen and tray scraps. And a staff member, Max Exstein, with special needs has been designated as the lead on the composting program. “I wanted to empower Max to have his own program here,” she adds, “so he does all recycling on campus and gets compost ready for Facilities to pick up.”

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  • May 10, 2021
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What our clients are saying

“What a wonderful dinner we had tonight for our international families. The food was delicious and well presented as well.”

“Thank you for including me today in the food waste demonstration/[chef competition] and flattering me with the role of “judge.” I will proudly don the [Stop Food Waste Day] apron the next time I plan an “event” in our own kitchen. I think this is a very worthwhile cause and the statistics you read off are staggering. They, alone, can intimidate a home chef, let alone be the “driver’ for a professional one.”

“Thank you and your staff for all the care and thought you give CSW adults and students. You approach events with such care and elegance- I don’t know how you do it! Especially day after day. Please thank all your staff for their wonderful work and kind manner with all of us. Here is to a great year!”

“Many, and I do mean many, thanks for a great Parents Weekend.  I heard from so many happy parents and you all work very hard to make it happen.  In gratitude and kindness…”

“We are so thankful and so impressed by your immediate attention to our power outage. It was such a relief to see all the equipment and workers coming in within a few hours of the outage. Thank you for serving dinner to all [the] students in a very difficult circumstance. Please extend our thanks to your workers who braved cold weather to grill hamburgers and hotdogs.”

“With all the prep work from Winterim ramping up and classes continuing as usual, it's a busy time to be a Forman teacher. Imagine my delight, tired as I was, when I delved into the upscale-restaurant-quality chicken parmesan our dining hall served last night. Forman is all about support, and providing our students with a dinner of that quality is just as important a measure of support as anything that happens in a classroom.”

“I can’t thank your entire team enough for the outstanding service, food, displays, everything!  You are a master at detail, and because of that Adam and I were able to focus on the parents.  I know what a sacrifice pulling off a weekend like this means, we are so appreciative and grateful to you all for your talent and generosity.”

“I ALWAYS feel spoiled by the meal offerings at CSW (The Cambridge School of Weston) and am entirely grateful for it. As I eat today's delicious and lavish lunch (and think about yesterday's as well), I can't tell you how much I feel so well cared for here, both with the food and by the dining hall staff. CSW cares for us in so many ways, both big and small.”

“Thank You! Chef Budd [and team], you overcame a new online ordering system (and hundreds of labels daily!), provided creative and healthy menus, continued to connect with local farmers to incorporate locally sourced ingredients, and worked tirelessly to serve the school community on three campuses.  While it feels like you are all a little like the Wizard of Oz right now, working behind a curtain in a kitchen far away, we sense your smiles and your passion to deliver the best possible service during these trying times. We are all so grateful!”

“I will say that CulinArt has always been a very collaborative partner to T. Rowe Price, listening to our current needs and future goals and suggesting realistic and achievable strategies to meet those goals.  2020 was obviously no exception.  CulinArt also altered other areas of our OCS and pantry programs to create safer environments for all our associates. We can only thank you for your continued flexibility and innovative ideas through these difficult times.”

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