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Sustain Charlotte and County's Solid Waste Program Recognize Recycling Excellence


Mecklenburg County Solid Waste and Sustain Charlotte were not able to hold their planned Earth Day Event for 2020 due to the pandemic. Sustain Charlotte's Sustainability Awards will celebrate many of the winners in the future, however, the award team wanted to announce the winners of the Recycling Excellence Award at this time. The Recycling Excellence Award Judging Criteria included creative or innovative solutions to waste reduction and/or recycling that inspires and educates.

Please join Sustain Charlotte and Mecklenburg County in congratulating the two 2020 Recycling Excellence Award recipients: Nourish Charlotte and PNC Music Pavilion!

Nourish Charlotte is a small business that prepares plant-based, organic, and healthy food for delivery. They use a lot of packaged materials. They have made huge strides in the past few years to reduce their waste, while also working to educate their customers to do the same.

Through composting, reusing containers and recycling combined, they produce less refuse than 90% of kitchens nationwide (scaled to volume). Their events are also low or no waste.

Nourish Charlotte educates their customers and the larger community in several ways by:

  • Including sustainability information in every order.
  • Creating blog articles, social media posts and other content to educate the public on waste reduction, recycling and sustainability.
  • Hosting in-person educational events for food vendors.

PNC Music Pavilion Charlotte is an amphitheater that is committed to zero waste. It diverts over 90% of their concert generated waste from the landfill. Zero waste stations are installed around the venue offering fans as well as food vendors an easy way to separate recycling, compost, and landfill trash. Water refill stations are located around the venue to encourage refilling water bottles, reducing the amount of plastic water bottles used.

In 2018, the venue eliminated plastic straws, and serves food and beverages in recyclable or compostable containers. Through a partnership with Earth Farms, the venue composted nearly 97,000 lbs. of food scraps and organic material in 2019. Additionally, they recycled nearly 150,000 lbs., and donated nearly 2,400 lbs. of clothing through fan-supported on-site clothing drives.