July 29, 2016
Morrisville – Copley Hospital is celebrating its first anniversary of its composting and recycling program. Working in conjunction with Black Dirt Farm in Greensboro Bend, Copley has composted 81,000 pounds of food scraps over the past year. That’s the equivalent of not burning 3,600 gallons of gasoline. Plus the hospital has helped fertilize 6 acres of mixed vegetable crops at the farm.
“We love the composting program,” said David Vinick, Director of Food Services for Copley Hospital. “It enables Copley to give back to our community and our staff is very proud of being part of a regenerative local food system.”
Each week Copley receives seven 40-gallon bins which are stored outside. Each day, one bin is placed in the kitchen for kitchen staff use. Two 5-gallon buckets are placed next to the dish room where staff and visitors drop off their dirty dishes. As they drop off their dishes, they toss food scraps, napkins and compostable plates and cups into the buckets. At the end of the night, the buckets are emptied into the kitchen bin and wheeled outside. Vinick says the hospital typically composts about 40 gallons of food scraps a day. He explains that Black Dirt Farm picks up the bins weekly, rinses them and replaces them. Sawdust is provided in warmer months to keep the smell down.
“The program is easy for the kitchen staff as Black Dirt Farm really takes care of it all,” says Vinick. “The team has really embraced composting and feel it is as important as our efforts to use more locally sourced food whenever we can.”
The food services team has been instrumental in educating staff and visitors as to what can be composted. They created a visual display of items to compost that is displayed above the compost buckets. This information is also included in orientation for new employees.
Copley Hospital is greater Lamoille County’s not-for-profit community hospital, providing a full range of comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services and emergency care 24 hours a day. Its mission is to improve the health status of the people of the community by providing the highest quality of care regardless of the ability to pay. Copley Hospital has been named one of the 2016 Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in the country, one of the Top 50 Hospitals in New England based on Patient Satisfaction, and the hospital’s orthopedics practice, Mansfield Orthopaedics, has been named best orthopedic practice by Vermont Sports readers for the past several years. Visit www.copleyvt.org or call 802-888-8888 for more information.