October 7, 2010
Martinsburg, WV VA Medical Center is the recipient of this year’s Good Neighbor Award category of the 2010 GreenGov Presidential Awards. A ceremony was held at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on October 7, 2010. The VA facility’s nutrition and food service staff developed the “Green Kitchen” project, which began four years ago and was designed to improve business practices and lessen operational impacts on the environment. This project has become a remarkable sustainability success story. The Green Kitchen project has enhanced manual food waste tracking, implemented a composting program, and assessed and developed potential program improvements. The project results include an 86 percent decrease in landfill food waste; a downward trend in overall food waste; roughly 265 pounds of food donated each week to a non-profit Veterans transitional housing group; approximately 530 pounds of food scraps collected weekly for composting; increased procurement of local produce; and two new community business partnerships that provide new opportunities for strengthening VA’s relationship with the local community.