Green Meeting Guidelines
Stonyfield Farm guidelines for green meetings and events
As part of our commitment to a healthy planet, the S.W.O.T. MAP team has developed Green Meeting and Event Guidelines that aim to reduce the environmental impact of events and meetings both onsite and offsite. While the guidelines are not an all-inclusive list of every possible action, they provide a standard that addresses environmental impact areas including energy use, transportation, waste, materials, and food.
Please be sure to read both the “Before” and “After” sections before your meeting or event, so that you will be prepared to execute all applicable guidelines. For large meetings (20+ attendees), please read the entire document. For smaller meetings (fewer than 20 attendees), you need only reference the bullets with an asterisk (*).
Event advertising/printed material
- * Strive for a paperless meeting. Promote and invite electronically; post event information, downloadable versions of programs, handouts, and itineraries on the Stonyfield shared drive for event participants; rely on PowerPoint without handouts and offer electronic versions upon request; avoid using folders, as they are often disposed of after a meeting.
- * Ensure that handouts and other printed materials are limited and, when needed, printed on 100% post-consumer, FSC-certified paper and printed double-sided.
- Avoid fluorescent and dark-colored paper, as it is not recyclable.
- For reoccurring or annual events, avoid printing dates and slogans on signs, posters, and banners, so that they may be easily reused.
- * Use reusable plastic name tag holders, not stickers, and have collection locations after the event.
- * Offer video- or teleconferencing for attendees who are not local.
- * Promote and incentivize alternative transport by organizing carpools and encouraging mass transportation, fuel-efficient vehicles, cycling, and walking. Highlight bike routes and public transit routes to the event location when applicable.
- Protect local air quality: Post signs imposing a “No idling” rule for buses, trucks, and cars.
Food and catering
- When selecting a caterer, include the following environmental priorities in your first discussion. Please feel free to use this sample “caterer letter,” containing all of the requirements below, to inform catering partners of your requirements.
FOOD & BEVERAGE
SERVING ITEMS & DECORATION
Adopt zero waste: Reduce, reuse, recycle, & compost
2. REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
4. REDUCE ENERGY USAGE
- * Remind attendees to drop off name tags at drop-off points.
- * Thoroughly rinse and recycle all yogurt cups.
- * Meeting host(s) are responsible for recycling & washingdishes, cups, and silverware used during the meeting.
- * Any excess food should be saved in the fridge and donated to a local soup kitchen. For more information, see “What to do with event waste” below.
- * Collect and save materials like nametags or banners for future events.
- Collect all biodegradable items (paper napkins, etc.) and food scraps, with the exception of dairy, fats and oils, and meat and bones.
- * Remember to turn off all lights/shut off all electronics after the event.
- Leftovers. Call your local soup kitchen. Items of food safety concern (e.g., mayonnaise or meat sitting out for hours) should not be donated. The Good Samaritan law protects companies from litigation were someone to become sick after eating something donated “in good will.”
- Recycling and trash. Please refer to your organization’s recycling and trash policies.