Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Reader Email: Eco-Friendly Food

We're taking a break from our Wedding Wednesday series on Green Weddings because we got a great email from a reader the other day asking for our advice.  We love to hear from our readers, and we love to help you out. If you have a question, please email us at, and we'll be happy to help you out.

I love reading your blog and getting great tips for weddings and being eco-friendly! I'm planning my wedding and I'm trying to go green myself.  I haven't been able to find a "green" caterer in my area. Any suggestions for how to find one or make the best out of this situation?


Well, Amy, we're glad you asked.  We did find this great directory of meal delivery/catering services that are eco-friendly. But if there's not one in your area, there are a few key things you can look for when selecting a caterer.
  • Go Local. A big part of being green is cutting down on the carbon foot-print.  If your caterer has to travel 50 miles with a big truck full of food, they are making a big carbon foot-print on your area.  It's also important to find a caterer who uses locally produced foods.  For the same reason, locally produced foods travel less distance and make less of an impact.  Additionally, local foods are often fresher and thus taste better (an added bonus!).
  • Stay in Season. As with going local, seasonal produce definitely is fresher and tastes better, but seasonal produce is able to be produced closer to your venue.  If you live up north, it will be harder to find fresh produce in the dead of winter. Instead, it will be shipped in from South America.  Use this guide to find produce that's in season.  Then base your menu selections off of that.  Seasonal produce is also cheaper, which will give you extra money to spend elsewhere, like buying carbon off-sets.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Give your caterer an accurate head count so that an abundance of food is not prepared and thus wasted.  However, all caterers make some extra food. Find one who donates their surplus to a homeless shelter in the area.  By donating leftovers, you'll cut down on the waste going straight to the landfill. Finally, find a caterer who recycles.  If your caterer recycles even some items, it will cut down on waste and be a greener wedding.
We hope that helps, Amy. If you have any other questions, feel free to email us!

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