Have you ever wondered how a local business can be more sustainable? Sustain Charlotte's Silver Partner Pasta & Provisions, Charlotte's family-owned Italian grocery and fresh pasta maker, is a great example of how a small business can do many seemingly small things that add up to make a difference.
During our August Green Drinks Charlotte + Sustain Charlotte Monthly Mixer, Tommy George, owner of Pasta & Provisions, inspired the audience by sharing the many ways in which his business is contributing to a more sustainable Charlotte community.
Tommy George discussed Pasta & Provisions' commitment to sustainability.
Tommy George and his wife, Debbie, opened Pasta & Provisions in 1992 in its current Myers Park location in Charlotte. From the very beginning, Tommy George had sustainability on his mind. First things first, he told mixer attendees, he was determined to get a recycling bin on the property. While it was bit of a challenge to get the property owner to give up a parking space, Tommy was eventually successful in his request.
Over 20 years later, the George's business has embraced sustainability in various ways:
Before you even enter the store, a sticker on the door that says "please remember to BYOB" reminds customers to bring in their reusable bag. Pasta & Provisions distributed 500 reusable shopping bags.
Employees also reflect the business's dedication to sustainability by asking "do you need a bag?" at check-out.
Tommy told mixer attendees about the creative way that he has encouraged sustainability around one of his top-selling items -- olive oil. Pasta & Provisions has 7 olive oils on tap! If that isn't cool enough, Tommy also encourages customers to re-use olive oil jars by allowing them to bring back their old jar for a re-fill. And, Tommy shared, if you forget your jar, no problem, you can grab a coffee cup from your car and fill that up with your favorite olive oil instead!
And it doesn't stop there. Customers can also get a discount by bringing in their own containers to fill with pasta sauce.
Pasta & Provisions has also committed to purchasing food packaging that is both sustainable and meets the needs of his business.
These are all examples of the creative ways in which a business owner can incorporate the mindset of sustainability into their business culture and practice. We're so grateful for the generous support of Pasta & Provisions and all of our partners. To learn how Sustain Charlotte can partner with your organization, visit our partnership page.