Less trash at Hog Day

Kudos to Hillsborough Hog Day for trying to go (almost) garbage-free! I wonder if Chapel Hill would try this for FestiFall?

[Hog Day logo] "Our goal is waste minimization, reducing waste in the first place and composting and recycling as much as we can," said Muriel Williman of Orange County's Solid Waste Management Department and a Hog Day Committee member. "While some trash is expected, we would like to reduce waste by 75-80 percent, even 90 percent. With everyone's help, we can."

Visitors should expect to see vendors serving on paper plates and bowls, or using wax paper to wrap food. Vendors will also be using biodegradable utensils (made from corn, potato or wheat starch) though most people will not even notice the difference. The goal is to be able to compost as much as possible. Any plastic utensils, film, condiment packets or other plastic can contaminate the compost collection.

- heraldsun.com: Hog Day goes garbage free, 3/25/08

You still won't find me there because I have had a strict no-mammals diet since 1985. But y'all enjoy.



It is good to see the Hog Day folks take this initiative.  The Blue Ridge Barbecue Festival has been doing it for years with a great level of success.  In fact, Hillsborough's Hog Day could take a good number of cue's (pun intended) from its neighboring festival to the west and return to focusing on barbecue.  Over the years, Hog Day has really declined into nothing more than arts, crafts, and carnival food.  There really isn't anything special about it anymore.

I went to the Blue Ridge Barbecue Festival last year, and was very impressed with their conservation efforts, from compost bins to ethically-grown meat. I'm glad to see that the Hog Day is moving in the same direction.

-Erin Crouse

Carrboro Day has pretty much in common with Hog Day. They're equally corny and similarly contained geographically, unlike Festifall. I think it's possible for the Carrboro Day organizers to set a similarly ambitious low-waste goal; in fact it might be a lot easier because no commercial vendors are involved -- just Boy Scouts (hot dogs) and Branch Library bakers. The Scouts dispense mustard and ketchup in big pumper containers. Free pizza arrives at the end of the day, however -- a mountain of rigid boxes to break down.

The Festifall organizers would have trouble persuading their food vendors to change their wrapping strategies. All Chapel Hill special event vendors pay very hefty fees, typically around $500, higher if they also sell drinks. I can't see engaging them in a united fight against foil and plastic utensils.


They certainly won't change if nobody asks them to.

I doubt we'd see much change for this year, but it's never too late to start. Let me think - the people to talk to are Parks & Rec and Sanitation in Chapel Hill. Parks & Rec organizes Festifall, and I don't offhand know who is in the position of festival organizer right now, but I can find out. The Sanitation superintendent is Harv Howard, and he'd be one of the ones to talk to about a zero-waste event. The other group would be Orange County Solid Waste, as they're the recycling people.

I'd like to start working on this. I'm definitely all in favour of zero-waste events. I know Festival for the Eno is starting to make noise in that direction, which is a pretty major thing to consider. If they can think about it, then Festifall can, too.

Let me find out who is in charge of the event and talk to them, and I'll check back in here and let y'all know.


It turns out that the Events guy at Parks & Rec is already headed in this direction. My hubby talked to him on Friday and he mentioned it out of the blue. So, yay!



im stationed at the recycling center to help people understand that even forks and spoons can be recyled please buy plates and forks and napkins that can be recyyled thanks ellen


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