Sustainability practices we follow year-round

Sustainability practices we follow year-round
Posted on 04/22/2021
Today may be Earth Day but we want you to know we go beyond that — we are committed to sustainability 365 days a year.
The Lenexa Public Market started composting with KC Can Compost in February this year and in just two months, we have we have diverted 2,600 pounds of organic waste from going to the landfill. All of those veggie scraps, coffee grounds, paper products and other organic waste really add up, especially with several merchants contribute.

By composting organic waste we are actively decreasing our City’s methane production and contributing to a healthier community. Plus, composting food waste puts nutrients back into the soil so healthier food can be grown safely and efficiently.

Additionally, we started recycling glass with Ripple Glass in September of 2020. Since then, we’ve recycled 594 pounds of glass — wine, liquor bottles, mason jars, syrup bottles and more.

While each of our merchants have differing sustainable efforts within each of their businesses, we picked a couple to shine a light on.

Mr. D’s Coffee has gone above and beyond by using all compostable, disposable products. It’s a more expensive option, at approximately a 30% increase on cost for their disposable products, but owner Johnny Chen feels it’s the right thing to do for both the environment and his business.

Chewology {Gyoza Bar} has continued to source their meats, produce and other ingredients as locally as possible.

“It’s great working with the community to build those connections," said Katie Liu-Sung, owner of Chewology. "The farmers are usually the ones who deliver their product to me.”

Chewology has relationships with several Kansas farmers including Steve’s Meat Market, Next to Nature Farm, Knapp Family Farms and once the the Lenexa Farmer’s Market opens back up this Saturday, they will get a lot of their produce from New Roots for Refugees, a Kansas City-based program helps refugee families start their own organic farm businesses.

Kate Smith, owner of Butterfield’s Bakery and Market, has prioritized managing the waste generated by their restaurant since their opening in December of 2020.

“With a little bit of care and effort, we are able to repurpose most of what would be considered "waste" like vegetable trimmings, stale bread, beer that is on its sell-by date and give it a whole new life instead of ending up in a landfill," Smith said. 

“Sustainability often gets a bad reputation because businesses can immediately think that it's going to cost them a lot of money to make their business more sustainable. In the long run, it not only benefits the environment, but it helps us grow our small business consciously. Things that are normally viewed as scraps becomes a new menu item. Buying locally creates relationships with growers and can result in future opportunities. And using seasonal ingredients is cost-effective and you're using better quality ingredients because it's in-season and in abundance. It saves us money and lets us keep our pricing affordable.”

Wondering how you can make a difference and practice sustainable living at home? Check out this news story on how to contribute to a greener Lenexa.

Published April 22, 2021