Hospital Provides Eco-Friendly Lunches

By KBJR News 1

August 4, 2010 Updated Aug 4, 2010 at 3:16 PM CDT

St. Mary's Medical Duluth Clinic is known for teaching healthy living, but they are taking strides to be recognized for more than just your well being.

They teamed up with the Miller Dwan Foundation to make sure they keep the environment in good health.

A few eco-friendly changes have already been made to the SMDC cafeteria.

"We completely eliminated all of our Styrofoam in the organization, in the cafeterias."

"We moved to a compostable product which has some limitations in that it weakens with heat and moisture."

The Miller Dwan Foundation and SMDC teamed up to add yet another option a reusable lunch container.

"From the end of the foundation, what we did, was purchase the containers. and then nutrition services are selling them through the cafeteria. We absorbed all of the upfront costs of getting involved in this recycling effort, and helping SMDC get it off the ground."

Containers cost $5 each and proceeds are donated back to the foundation.

"If we can reduce our volume of waste at work as well as get ourselves trained to reduce our volume of waste at home we are all creating a healthier region, a healthier environment, and that is part of the mission of the foundation to actually help people live healthier and be healthier."

Just last fall, seven thousand styrofoam containers were getting tossed in the trash each week.

After the transition to biodegradable to-go containers or the reusable option, 2,200 biodegradable to-go containers end up in the compost.