In the U.S., food waste accounts for the largest amount of debris going into landfills. We all have seen the vast amount of food that can be wasted at a catered event, and that's why it's so important that not just traditional restaurants, but also caterers, become more environmentally sustainable. At the Green Restaurant Association, we strive to help all types of food facilities improve their environmental impact. By adopting more sustainable practices, caterers can reduce not only food waste, but also disposable packaging, energy consumption, and water use.
We had the awesome opportunity to interview the owner and President of La Prima Catering, Dave Evans. La Prima Catering has five Certified Green Restaurant® locations in Washington D.C., Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maryland, all of which have over 150 GreenPoints™.
As a 4 Star Certified Green Restaurant® with 319.11 GreenPoints™, La Prima Catering’s College Park, Maryland location has the most GreenPoints™ and highest certification of any Certified Green Restaurant® in the D.C. area.
Some of La Prima’s notable steps at all locations include:
High efficiency pre-rinse spray valves
Energy Star equipment, which is 30-40% than traditional models
Green-E Certified Renewable Energy Credits (RECs)
Sustainable furnishing & building materials
Comprehensive recycling and composting program
No use of polystyrene foam (aka Styrofoam™)
Additional notable steps at College Park location:
On-site food production at their urban garden
Reused items (equipment, furnishings, décor)
What motivated you to become a Certified Green Restaurant®?
I have always aimed to have a company that does the most good possible. Doing whatever we can to create sustainable food systems is essential not just to me personally, but to the future of our planet. When we learned about the Green Restaurant Association it just made sense to get certified.
What environmental steps are you most proud of implementing?
All of the steps we have taken to be a more sustainable company are equally important to us. Everything from switching to wind power in our kitchens to using compostable paper products to our partnerships with local farmers makes a difference. To create a culture of sustainability all of those things matter equally. I have a lot of pride that we have created that culture in our company.
What have you noticed or observed as Certified Green Restaurant® that you’d like to share?
Our Green Restaurant certification opens up conversations with our customers that we would not be having otherwise. I think it has created a stronger connection with the folks we serve. People genuinely appreciate the effort we put into being a sustainable company. We will always have more work to do, but I am proud of how far we have come and I hope our efforts inspire others to follow suit.