A Hamilton City Council initiative is helping local events reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill, one disposable plate at a time.
The ‘Silver Service’ is a self-contained mobile caravan equipped with crockery, cutlery and a dishwashing facility.
The concept was developed by Gourmet in the Gardens and will allow customers to hire their cutlery and crockery before returning it to the caravan for washing and reuse. This eliminates the need for disposable containers, plates and cutlery used at events.
The caravan has a cylinder which can hold 200 litres of water, and the capacity to store up to 4000 plates and bowls.
The initiative is a partnership between the Council and Gourmet in the Gardens which organises food truck events throughout the Waikato.
The caravan will launch for the first-time at Gourmet Garage, at The Barn in Claudelands this Friday 28 September from 5.30pm. It will continue to be used at upcoming Gourmet in the Gardens events throughout summer.
Tania Simpson, Gourmet in the Gardens Director, estimates that Silver Service will divert 6,000 to 7,000 thousand litres of waste from landfill each night Gourmet in the Gardens is on.
“Throughout the years we have seen first-hand the amount of waste generated at food truck events. We have had various suggestions from our customers about ways we could reduce our event waste, however we wanted a solution which focused on reducing and reusing, instead of recycling or composting,” says Ms Simpson.
A percentage from the crockery hire revenue each week will be donated to Waikato Hospice.
Community groups and event organisers will also have the opportunity to hire the caravan for local events.
Councillor Siggi Henry, Chair of the Council’s Waste Taskforce, says events are a great opportunity to reduce the volume of waste the city sends to landfill.
“Events generate a significant amount of waste, and it’s great to see an initiative like Silver Service which focuses on reducing waste. This is at the top of the waste hierarchy and is the most simple and effective way to conserve resources and produce less waste,” says Cr Henry.
Kirsty Quickfall, Waste Minimisation Advisor, says the Silver Service is an excellent opportunity to engage with the community on reducing and recycling waste.
“We hope the Silver Service will encourage Hamiltonians and event organisers to think more about the waste they are generating and make people think what changes they can make to produce less and re-use more,” says Ms Quickfall.