Doing the Right Thing With Compostables and Composting at T. Rowe Price - CulinArt Group

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Doing the Right Thing With Compostables and Composting at T. Rowe Price

OWINGS MILLS, MD., May 17, 2021— Compostable servicewares including cups, plates, bowls, utensils and other items are becoming more commonplace as product formulations evolve and product quality increases. T. Rowe Price in Owings Mills, Md., firmly embraces recycling, composting, and use of compostables as part of its corporate environmental policy and is on the forefront of changing practices for the good of the planet.

Compostable containers are used at all T. Rowe Price locations in Owings Mills, Baltimore, and Colorado Springs, Colo., where CulinArt provides dining services (since 2013). Next up is implementing compostables in office coffee services. There are 93 pantries over all T. Rowe Price sites, so phase-in of compostables in OCS will be gradual.

One challenge to implementation is educating customers that compostables are in use and that they must be separated into their own recycling bins when customers are through with them. “The client started out with simple trash cans” for composting, explains Eric Smith, senior director of dining services for CulinArt, and created marketing and signage to encourage customers to participate.

To take that to the next level, the company acquired multi-section bins made from recycled milk containers, into which customers deposit compostables, recyclables, and regular trash. Smith worked with CulinArt’s Marketing Department to create signage with pictograms to prevent items from being placed in the wrong bins. “It’s a matter of training and mentoring in order to do the right thing,” Smith adds.

Starting in 2015, the team began working with Veteran Composting, having adopted the Compass Waste Not Program to assist in accounting for what is going into the compostable stream and to better help control food cost. “We collect our scraps and any possible product that is expired,” Smith says, “which is measured by the quart and recorded. We collect this through clear, five-gallon, marked food containers and then place it in outdoor large totes.”

Veteran visits the site once a week to collect the used bins and replace them with clean ones.  As the vendor’s name suggests, all of the composting collection and processing is done at its facility by a team of armed forces veterans or their family members. “At the time we started this program, Veteran was the only approved vendor to pick up food scraps from foodservice and restaurant operations in Maryland,” Smith notes.

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  • May 17, 2021
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What our clients are saying

“This has been a year of unprecedented uncertainty, but through it all, Denee, chef Darby, Samantha, and the whole CulinArt team, provided the best dining experience the school has had in my thirteen year tenure.  It was an absolute pleasure to work with them, and I can't wait for next year when the craziness of COVID brings everyone back into the dining hall for meals. We look forward to working with Denee, Chef Darby, Samantha, and the rest of the CulinArt team again next year.”

“I will say lunch was pretty awesome today.”

“Just came back to campus after a year of pandemic [and] just want to say that I can really tell the effort that both dining halls and all of the other locations are really putting in to make us students still feel like there is more than enough food available, good food, fresh food, healthy food. I don't think students are aware that there is such a food shortage/worker shortage and that what goes on behind the scenes must be a logistical nightmare. But I recognize it at least :) the staff was been so friendly and kind, even in the very rare occasion when something took longer than expected I could tell they were trying their absolute hardest to provide it fast and with great quality. Great job to all of them, this one student greatly appreciates the effort you all do. -Student, Stony Brook University”

“I just wanted to touch base as another school year draws to end. I cannot thank you enough for how smoothly this year went. Chef Felix [Herrera] and his staff made it seamless in a year with lots of wrinkles.    ”

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

“I wanted to let you know that for this entire school year I have been so well fed! I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE all the diversity of salad choices we have each day and the amazing entrees.  My favorites are the carnitas, chili, curry, and cajun chicken days.  I am so grateful for all the care that goes into the food because I know I do not eat enough vegetables or balanced meals without you and your crew's work.  Thank you so much!  You take such great care of us!!”

“Just wanted to thank you and the team at Lake Success for taking care of us for my daughter's birthday. I figured the event was going to be straight forward, but it felt like the event was treated with just as much care and attention to detail as a wedding or other big event, which was very much appreciated. You anticipated everything that we needed and are so capable, bravo! The party was 10x more beautiful and lovely in reality compared to how I imagined it, thanks to you guys.”

“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.”

“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.”

“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!”

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