The Wayside Restaurant has been renovating and upgrading its operation for the past 10 years, to become compliant with the high standards required to become a Green Restaurant”. This year, they reaped their rewards by being awarded a designation that only 5 restaurants in the state have received. Karen and Brian Zecchinelli, proprietors of the well-known Wayside Restaurant in Berlin, are proud of this designation and have plans to do more… (Stay tuned).
To receive this designation, the restaurant had to first meet eight core environmental standards and then develop an Environmental Action Plan to further reduce the environmental impact of its business operations. The process to reach the Vermont’s Green Restaurant Status is outlined at www.vbep.org/restaurant.html. According to Brian Zecchinelli, “The Wayside will continue to focus on waste reduction, water and energy conservation, pollution prevention, transportation efficiencies and sustainable promotion.” He hopes that his example is one that the many restaurants in our state will follow.
Among the many ways that the Wayside Restaurant and Bakery help the environment is through their composting program that was introduced to them by a former employee who was a student at Montpelier High School. He was already familiar with the process through CVSWMD’s School Composting Program, and showed them how easy it was to compost. Approximately 1,000 customers are served every day. Consequently, the volume of scraps that need to be composted was somewhat intimidating at first. Due to the commitment of the kitchen and wait staff, the whole process has now become second nature to them all. They sure don’t miss the messy trash bags of the past, Brian assures us, and feels great, knowing that they have reduced their carbon footprint. This ‘green status’ is definitely commendable. Green Energy Times wants to extend a big Kudos to everyone there at the Wayside!
If you are among the few that are not familiar with their location on Rte. 302, between Barre and Montpelier, it is time to search this Green Restaurant out. They carry Green Energy Times at the owner’s request – so stop by to find copies of the newest issues of Green Energy Times and know that you can feel good when you grab a “green” home-style bite to eat from the restaurant or the bakery… Be sure to congratulate them and tell them about the initiatives you. too, have implemented in your own life – We should ALL have a story to tell!