Maplewood's Eco-Friendly Eateries Gain First Green Dining District Distinction In The Country
Earlier this week, Maplewood made history when they were declared the first Green Dining District in the country. Restaurants along the stretch of Maplewood between Southwest Avenue and Sutton Boulevard earned the distinction when 25 percent of the independently owned establishments became certified by the Green Dining Alliance (GDA).
In order to reach 25 percent, eight eateries in the Maplewood area took the initiative to become GDA-certified. According to the GDA website, a “green” restaurant emphasizes “reducing, recycling and composting restaurant waste; operating facilities with efficiency; and sourcing sustainable food, to-go ware and cleaning supplies.” Schlafly Bottleworks was the first to enter the program back in 2012, but they have since been joined by Traveling Tea, Kakao Chocolate, Foundation Grounds, The Post Sports Bar & Grill, Great Harvest Bread Co., Water Street and Pie Oh My!.
Rachelle L’Ecuyer, manager of the Maplewood Special Business District, helped these local businesses on the road to becoming eco-friendly by pushing for Maplewood to subsidize the GDA membership fees. According to a press release, even more Maplewood restaurants are said to be in the process of joining the GDA. Perks to becoming members include an individualized audit to gauge sustainable practices, such as water conservation or purchasing Fair Trade, and increased opportunities for collaboration with fellow business owners.