GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Tournament officials will roll out a sustainability program at the Grand Taste and Grand Taste Garden – the three-day food-tasting events held during the Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give – that is expected to divert more than 95 percent of its waste to recycling or compost.
The goal is to reduce the events’ environmental footprint by ultimately creating a zero-waste event, said Cathy Cooper, Executive Director of the Meijer LPGA Classic.
“The Grand Taste experience is like no other on any Tour – you get to watch incredible golf while enjoying the best food and drink West Michigan has to offer,” Cooper said. “But we want to be mindful of waste. This new sustainability program will help us not only create an amazing experience but also a sustainable and zero-waste event that will ultimately give back to our neighbors through Simply Give.”
The sustainability program will include:
- Food waste from Grand Taste and the Grand Taste Garden will be composted, including what the vendors generate during food preparation.
- Bottles, cans, plastics and metals collected will be recycled.
- Plates and bowls used for serving food will be made from unbleached plant fiber, containing no wax or plastic lining, which will compost in 2-4 months in a commercial facility
- All forks and spoons will be made from certified compostable bioplastics with a cellulose wrapper and will compost in 3-6 months in a commercial facility.
- Banks of waste bins will be stationed throughout Grand Taste and the Grand Taste Garden will be manned by an estimated 50 volunteers, who will direct attendees on where to properly place their recyclable, compostable and trash items.
The only trash from the food-tasting event held during tournament week will be items like potato chip bags and candy wrappers, said Erik Petrovskis, Director of Environmental Compliance and Sustainability for Meijer.
“Our goal is to divert more than 95 percent of the waste generated from the Grand Taste events because it’s important to show our environmental stewardship to the community,” he said. “The main focus behind the tournament is to support the Meijer Simply Give program that stocks the shelves of food pantries across the Midwest, and so we want to do our part by reducing food waste.”
As in previous years, all remaining food from the Grand Taste and Grand Taste Garden will be donated to local food pantries.
The Zero Waste International Alliance (ZWIA) defines zero waste as at least 90 percent resource recovery rate.
The 2019 Meijer LPGA Classic will host a full field of 144 of the best women golfers for 72 holes of stroke play over four days of competition. Proceeds from the tournament – and each of the week’s festivities – will once again benefit the Meijer Simply Give program that restocks the shelves of food pantries across the Midwest. The 2018 tournament alone raised $1.1 million for local food pantries through Simply Give. In total, the five tournaments have generated more than $4.2 million for the Meijer Simply Give program.
To follow the Meijer LPGA Classic before, during and after tournament week, please post about your experience and share your pictures on social media using the hashtags #OutDriveHunger, #forehunger, #SimplyGive and #MeijerGives.
For more information on the Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give or to volunteer or purchase tickets, please visit meijerLPGAclassic.com.
About Meijer: Meijer is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer that operates more than 240 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin. A privately-owned and family-operated company since 1934, Meijer has a fundamental philosophy aimed at strengthening the communities it serves and proudly donates more than 6 percent of its net profit each year to charities throughout the Midwest. With hunger as a corporate philanthropic focus, Meijer partners with hundreds of food banks and pantries through its Simply Give and food rescue programs. Meijer also supports education, disaster relief, and health and wellness initiatives. For additional information on Meijer philanthropy, please visit www.meijercommunity.com. Follow Meijer on Twitter @twitter.com/Meijer and @twitter.com/MeijerPR or become a fan at www.facebook.com/meijer.
About Blythefield Country Club: Located just north of Grand Rapids, Blythefield has been providing families the best golf and social experience in West Michigan since 1928. With the Rogue River flowing through, Blythefield boasts one of the most beautiful championship layouts in Michigan. Previously, Blythefield has hosted the 1953 Western Amateur, the 1961 Western Open, won by Arnold Palmer, and the 2005 Western Junior won by Rickie Fowler. Beginning in 2014, Blythefield is honored to host the Meijer LPGA Classic. Learn more about Blythefield Country Club at www.blythefieldcc.org.