On the Road to Sustainability

On the Road to Sustainability

Food & Drink

On the Road to Sustainability


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Field Trips

Learning about the machinery behind the green bean harvest.

Visiting the green beans in their natural habitat.

Chef Bob Schafer mixing up pumpkin and cherry shakes at Truitt Bros. Tru Culinary Center.

Sampling the shakes—attendees were divided as to which was their favorite.

Dining at Willamette Valley Vineyards.

The menu, designed by Chef Bob Schafer for Truitt Bros.
-Columbia River Basin Pear and Oregon Hazelnut Salad
-Pacific Northwest Four Bean Salad
-Yukon Gold Potato Salad
-Willamette Valley Blue Lake Whole Green Beans with toasted Oregon Hazelnuts
-Ankeny Hill Wild Rice
-Grilled Oregon Pork Chops
-Grilled Oregon Salmon
-Columbia River Basin Pear Hazelnut Tart

One final glass of Pinot Noir or Pinot Gris on the deck at Willamette Valley Vineyards before boarding the bus back to Portland.

Round-Table Round-Robin

Marketing from the Menu
Best Partnership Practices from Alison Denis, Burgerville Restaurants; and Pam and Bob Howard, Country Natural Beef
-Listen to key learnings from other manufacturers/suppliers/operators
-Co-brand on the menu to push manufacturers/suppliers front-and-center for the consumer
-Get employees on the same page via conversation, connection, repetition

Waste Less, Save More
Strategies to Manage Food Waste from Andrew Shakman, LeanPath; and Babe O’Sullivan, City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability

Know all waste management options in your area and base your purchase decisions on your disposal options. If your disposal options aren’t very developed, get a group of like-minded companies/individuals together to help develop new infrastructure.

Energy Efficiency and Eco-Labels: Sustainable Efforts and How They Can Power Your Bottom Line
Recipe for success from Lyn Schmidt, Energy Trust/Lockheed Martin
-Set goals/make a plan
-Know your costs and usage
-Form an employee green team
-Manage resources
-Implement start up/shut down procedures
-Buy efficiently
-Evaluate results/celebrate success

According to Scott Exo, Food Alliance, certification by an independent third party is a framework to help companies think about where they can make improvements. (Truitt Bros. is the first Food Alliance-certified processor.)

Role of Social Media in Sustainability and Green Business
Paul Barron, FastCasual.com

Starbucks Case Study:
-Offered a 24-hour coupon for free pastry via Twitter
-Within the 1st 3 hours, had 35,000 new followers, 191,000 mentions
-In total, received 57,000 new followers and 300,000 mentions
-$17,000 cost; generated $500,000 in revenue
-Promotion was 3 times more effective than any past print campaign

Restaurants, use new media to establish thought leadership, disseminate a coupon/promo, or share photos/video. Think of it as life streaming.

More Key Notes from the Keynotes

Communicating the Sustainability Message: How and Why, Methods and Benefits

A sustainable corporation is one that creates profit for its shareholders while protecting the environment and improving the lives of those with whom it interacts.

Today’s 4 P’s: Product, People, Planet, Profit

What is the message?
-Where food and ingredients come from
-How the food was produced and/or processed
-What it does for the environment

Just over 70% of consumers indicate that knowing a company is mindful of their impact on the environment and society makes them more likely to buy their products or services, and nearly 50% state it makes them more likely to buy their stock.

Areas to review for an eco-makeover
-Ingredients and sizes

Possible communication mediums: print/radio/tv, website, public relations, publicity stunt, promotion, direct mail, email, social media, menu, in-store point-of-purchase

Why? Premium Quality = Perceived Value = Brand Advantage

Eat well, eat local. Fresh real food. Spread the word.

Linda Duke, Duke Marketing


Monday in Review, Photos by Rick Schafer

Field Trips

Processing facility at Orchard View Farms.

Full Sail Brewing produces 336,000 bottles per day with a brewing staff of five people.

Freshness first—there’s only a 2 1/2 day supply of beer at Full Sail Brewing on any given day.

Tasting hops at Full Sail Brewing.

View from Full Sail Brewing, in the Columbia River Gorge.

Built in 1911, McMenamin’s The Edgefield previously served as the Multnomah County Poor Farm.

Outdoor barbecue at McMenamin’s The Edgefield.

My marionberry ice cream matches my shirt.

Sustainability in Action

Michelle Ratcliffe, Director of Farm to School Programs, Ecotrust’s Food and Farms, led a walking tour of the food companies located in the Ecotrust Building—Laughing Planet Café, Hot Lips Pizza and Sustainable Harvest Coffee Importers.

Quote from Michelle regarding today’s consumers—‘Educated eaters are coming your way.’

Richard Satnick, Founder and Chief Burrito Officer at Laughing Planet Café
Interesting point: When making menu or product changes to become more sustainable, you must have the conversation with your customers to explain subsequent changes in their dining experience. Laughing Planet recently switched from using beans transported from the Midwest to locally grown beans sourced from Truitt Bros. Customer education on the switch actually turned into a marketing campaign for Smart Beans. Soon to come: counter cards, t-shirts, and more.

Also enjoyed that Richard termed a Laughing Planet burrito a ‘portable nutrition device.’

David Yudkin, Partner, Hot Lips Pizza
Thought provoking:
-Make a high-quality product; everything else is nominal.
-A locally grown tomato has to be on the pizza within 24 hours.
-When sourcing locally, how to communicate to customers when they can’t have what they want? (If the tomato pizza isn’t available, suggest a different seasonal variety.)
-4 categories for sustainability: facility, food, social, energy
-Action step: everyone go out and implement 1 sustainable practice that is a fit for your brand. Once you do, share the info.

David Griswold, Founder and President, Sustainable Harvest Coffee Importers
Traceability is key—where is it grown? Get the growers to tell their stories.

Currently spending 68% of the marketing dollar on farmer support (training, education, etc.) vs. 32% customer marketing.

Key Notes from the Keynotes

As it pertains to food, the term “sustainability” differs in consumer interpretation—i.e. fresh, organic, local, green—with varying degrees of awareness and acceptance.

Consumers interested in sustainability indicate they will pay 20% more for products that they perceive/believe to be ‘sustainable.’

Sourcing is important to the consumer; ‘where it comes from’ doesn’t have to mean local, but consumers want to know the story/source behind the product.

The new value equation: price + quality + utility
-Utility is the strongest emphasis among Boomers—what is necessary, durable, etc.; getting away from waste (i.e. attention to packaging)
-Younger consumers are most concerned about social responsibility, the treatment of others

Michelle Berry, The Hartman Group

IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) predicts that if we don’t reduce agricultural emissions now, there will be global agricultural collapse by 2050.

40% of the earth’s land surface is in agriculture; farms are much less effective than forests at converting carbon dioxide to oxygen.

70% of the world’s water is devoted to irrigation.

Per analysis of climate change per ton of protein—worst proteins: lamb, beef; best: vegetable-based proteins.

What can you do?
-Become educated about life cycles
-Advocate/implement portion control
-Reduce meat consumption
-Work with farmers who employ environmentally friendly practices
-Consider vendors who are willing to work together toward environmental protection

Rita Schenck, Executive Director, Institute for Environmental Research and Education (IERE)

Presentations from the Northwest Sustainability Discovery Tour will be available following the event at http://www.truittbros.com/nwsdiscoverytour2009/index.html.


A Taste of Oregon

The Northwest Sustainability Discovery Tour commenced with dinner on the roof of the Ecotrust Building, in the trendy Pearl District (perfect weather and views!). Attendees were formally welcomed with remarks from Peter Truitt, co-founder and president of Truitt Bros., and Chef Bill King, vice president of culinary development, McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants.

The menu was a representation of the ingredients and products native to/available from the Pacific Northwest.

-Organic baby spinach, summer berries, toasted hazelnuts, sweet red onion

-Olive oil-roasted fingerling potatoes with sea salt, fresh cracked pepper, and herbs
-Roasted sweet corn, red peppers, sweet onion, cilantro, and extra-virgin olive oil

-Seared line-caught Pacific halibut filet or black cod; Spanish Romesco Sauce with roasted peppers, almonds, olive oil, sherry vinegar; Oregon honey-burgundy BBQ glaze; Organic basil-hazelnut pesto
-Ricotta & Parmesan Ravioli with summer squash & heirloom tomatoes ragout

-Crepes with Oregon organic blackberries


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