At Rivers Edge Catering, we believe it is our responsibility to keep our business practices as sustainable as possible. But it can be daunting when we are constantly bombarded with confusing choices and conflicting information.
On the quest to create a perfectly sustainable farm-to-table menu, Dan Barber, a James Beard awarded New York chef and deep food thinker, has said, “Sustainability is a little like religion: we’re all striving for an ideal, but it’s difficult, if not impossible, to achieve perfection. We sin a little here. We sin a littler there. But a few simple adjustments help a lot.”
In an attempt to make sustainability a little bit less overwhelming, we put together three easy tips for sustainable eating.
1. Eat Seasonally
Oregon has an abundance of great seasonal fruits and vegetables. Try eating fruits in the summer and leafy greens and root vegetables in the winter.
By eating more produce than any other food group, you are already making an impact. Stock up on your favorite foods when they are in season and then preserve them, so you can still enjoy them in the off-season.
With the rise in popularity of low-carb, high protein diets, people are consuming meat at a crazy rate. In 2013, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization did a study that estimates livestock accounts for 15 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. That’s about the same as the entire global transport sector! By limiting your meat intake, you help to combat this trend.
2. Buy Local
What you eat is important, but how it gets to you is arguably just as important.
Choose to support small family-owned local businesses, like Rivers Edge, that are committed to sustainability. We support local farms and purveyors whenever possible.
When going grocery shopping, select local meat, poultry, and fish whenever possible. Eat vegetables, dairy, grains, and beans that are locally sourced and grown.
Did you know that produce travelling nationally to supply large grocery stores travels an average of 1,518 miles and emits 5 to 17 times the greenhouse gases of local food distributors.
On the other hand, food coming from local sources is estimated to travel an average of just 45 miles.
3. Reduce Food Waste
Our culture puts an emphasis on excess. As a whole, we eat and waste an astronomical amount. Doing one large grocery haul each week can be more convenient, but shopping more often and only buying for a day or two can reduce the amount of food that gets lost or goes bad.
If you do find that you have a lot of food waste, you can turn it into compost or revamp your leftovers into new and exciting meals.
At Rivers Edge Catering, we cook a lot of food at once. This reduces the energy and resources of cooking in several small batches. You can also try implementing this into your home cooking routine. We have also gotten efficient at knowing appropriate food portions and knowing how to supply the perfect amount of food for your event. Not bringing too much food can drastically reduce food waste.
When planning your next corporate event, keep sustainability a priority. Use reusable silverware and plates, offer convenient recycling, and serve River’s Edge delicious and sustainable food.