2015 Rs of Excellence Award Winners

Rs of Excellence Nomination Form

The 2015 Rs of Excellence Awards were presented at the RCA’s Waste Reduction Conference “Under the Big Top” banquet evening at The Fairmont Banff Springs on October 1, 2015.

2015 Corporate Leadership Award: Calgary Italian Bakery Ltd.

The Calgary Italian Bakery took steps to improve its waste diversion after its first waste composition study showed over 90% of material going to landfill had the potential to be diverted. Jay Cummings, Research and Development Manager, took charge of increasing the bakery’s waste diversion. Colour coded bins were introduced, and bakery staff was engaged to gain buy-in and support.

The Calgary Italian Bakery now recycles or reuses almost 80% of the materials they used to send to the landfill. Organic waste has been reduced from 20,000 kg to 11,000 kg per month through source reduction, with remaining organic waste diverted to a local pig farmer and management staff is also now evaluated on their support and growth of these initiatives.

2015 Social Marketing Award: The City of Red Deer's Composting at Home Program

Using Community-Based Social Marketing Principles, Red Deer’s Composting at Home program gives participants all the tools and training they need to start backyard composting, in exchange for a commitment to compost for one year.

Since 2012, 839 households have committed to composting, and results show that 72% of households are still actively composting one year later.

During that time, the program has diverted an estimated 54 tonnes of organic waste from the landfill, turning it into a valuable soil amendment.

Every year, the program becomes more popular. In year two it was full after 2.5 days, and in year three, 200 spaces were filled in only 36 hours.

The City of Red Deer has also demonstrated leadership in this program by sharing its experience and resources with others interested in setting up similar programs.

2015 Community Leadership Award: LeftOvers Calgary

Close to half of the food produced worldwide is wasted. LeftOvers Calgary is a local organization helping to connect local food business and companies to local charities.

Leftovers Calgary is a 100% volunteer-based organization that aims to reduce food waste in the City through social engagement. Leftovers volunteers pick up near-expired food from 22 different vendors a week and drop off at 13 different social service agencies in need of perishable goods.

By connecting directly with communities to find out where the needs lay, then taking the time to connect with business owners, LeftOvers Calgary finds out how to best service each community.

LeftOvers Calgary serves the community in many ways, connecting needs, reducing hunger, reducing waste and filling kitchens with fresh food that would otherwise be thrown away.

2015 Public Education Award: RedHat Co-operative Ltd. - Misfit Veggies Campaign

Building on the Inglorious Fruits and Vegetables campaign launched by French grocery store Intermarché, RedHat Co-op developed a Misfit Veggies marketing campaign for non-standard veggies grown by its members.

Typically, five to 10% of greenhouse-grown vegetables will look funny and be discarded despite being perfectly edible.

RedHat packages up the unsightly produce and sells them for 30% less than their more attractive counterparts. The company has produce in Safeway and Sobeys stores in Western Canada, and is currently licensing the brand for expansion into the US.

2015 Lifetime Achievement Award: Ken Armstrong

Ken is a principal consultant with Tetra Tech EBA with over 40 years of experience in Civil Engineering on a variety of major environmental, municipal, and industrial engineering projects in western and northern Canada. He has overseen key aspects of infrastructure and program development for organics diversion programs in Wood Buffalo, Leduc, and Roseridge.

Ken’s current assignments include assessing the capacity of current and proposed landfills and technologies to extend the operational life of the landfill.

A primary option for current systems analysis is the assessment of the organic waste component. Systems reviewed include in-vessel composting alternatives as a viable alternative to other higher technology solutions, such as waste-to-energy processes.