Food Depackaging Services

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Gundersen’s food depackaging services in Middleton, Wis., can have big impacts on your bottom line and the health of the environment.

Rather than burying your food waste in a landfill, our depackaging services separate organic and non-organic materials to reuse as much as possible. Acceptable items are then recycled or turned into renewable energy—simultaneously reducing your carbon footprint and costs associated with garbage disposal.

Items that can be processed include canned food, bagged food, plastic containers, compostable food waste and more. For additional details, including full lists of what can and cannot be processed, contact Emma Westphal at efwestph@gundersenhealth.org or (608) 775-0831.

Certificates of destruction are available upon request.

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Save money and go green

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Save Money and Go Green

With earth day just around the corner, now is the perfect time to start incorporating green habits into your everyday routine if you haven’t already. Not only do green practices benefit the planet, they can save you money! Here are a few tips to get you started on a green routine.
1. Buy kitchen cloth towels instead of paper towels.
Buying reusable cloth towels may seem like a big investment upfront but in the long run it will save you money because you won’t have to keep purchasing paper towels. Take this tip one step further and look for towels made out of organic fabric.
2. Limit your takeout each month.
Buying takeout food produces a lot of waste and over time the cost adds up. Focus on eating more at home. Take this tip one step further and try to incorporate local and organic options into your grocery list.
3. Brew your own coffee or tea at home.
Just like buying takeout, buying coffee or tea on the go produces a lot of waste and becomes expensive over time. Consider buying your own tea kettle or coffee maker. Take this tip one step further by purchasing organic tea or sustainably sourced coffee beans.
4. Limit your screen time.
It’s tempting to watch TV in the evening before bed but this habit can disrupt your sleep and add to your energy costs. Consider turning off the TV an hour before going to bed and read a book instead or spend time with your family. Take this tip one step further and limit time in front of the computer as well.
5. Make your own cleaning supplies
Store-bought cleaning supplies are expensive and it’s not always easy to know whether the ingredients are safe for you and your family. You can save money and help the environment by making your own cleaning supplies using simple ingredients around your house, such as lemon juice, vinegar and baking soda. Take this tip one step further by reusing a spray bottle or container.
Not sure how to create your own cleaning supplies? Check out our blog https://gundersenenvision.wordpress.com/2017/09/05/green-cleaning/

Go Green in March

james-pond-103321-unsplashHow can you “go green” in March?

Even though April is known as earth month, we should be thinking of ways to go green every month. In March for example, many people go green for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, but there is another kind of “green” to consider!

  1. Think local. Buy locally produced foods or drinks, and use reusable tableware and utensils versus disposable items if you are hosting a St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
  2. Get festive. Make St. Patrick’s Day or spring themed decorations with recycled or reused materials. Not only will it benefit the environment, it will save you money.
  3. Take out the bike. If you are attending a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, consider walking or biking to get there. If the weather prevents you from walking or biking, consider carpooling or utilizing the local transit system.
  4. Get digging. Use the first day of spring as an excuse to start prepping for the gardening season by picking out seeds from a local seed library or buying locally produced compost or potting soil

Check out Envision’s Udderly Green soil amendment products: http://www.gundersenenvision.org/envision/learn-from-the-leader/
For more information on how you can order any of our Udderly Green soil amendment products contact: efwestph@gundersenhealth.org

How to save energy this holiday season

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How to save energy this holiday season
If you’re planning to decorate your house this holiday season, consider these tips to save energy:
1. Switch to LED holiday lights.
2. Put your outdoor or indoor lights on a timer.
3. Consider decorating inside with candles versus lights.
4. Turn off overhead lights in a room if your Christmas tree lights are on.
5. Turn down the thermostat when you have a large number of guests at your house.
6. Before you head out to visit family or go on vacation, be sure to unplug appliances that don’t need to be left on and turn off lights in the house.
7. Take a walk to see holiday lights versus driving.
8. If you’re in charge of cooking the holiday meal, consider cooking multiple dishes at a time.
9. Avoid opening the oven door to peek at food and keep a lid on pots as much as possible to prevent heat from escaping.
10. If you’re buying electronics or appliances look for the Energy Star label.

Think green this holiday season and save energy!

The ‘E’ in team: Electronics recycling was mega-success

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A team effort to collect electronic wastes allowed staff members at Gundersen Health System to safely dispose of their old TVs, computers and more—while donating food to a great cause.

Literally truckloads of consumer electronic wastes avoided the landfill or improper disposal, while more than three-quarters of a ton of food went to feed local families.

“That’s a win-win in anyone’s book,” says Tom Thompson, sustainability coordinator, who arranged the Gundersen e-waste recycling events Oct. 11-12 on the La Crosse and Onalaska campuses. The events were sponsored by Gundersen’s Environmental Compliance department.

By the numbers
Customers: 205 staff members in Onalaska;
242 in La Crosse
Collected: 14,840 pounds of electronic
waste in La Crosse; 11,945 pounds of electronic
waste in Onalaska
Food: 1,723 pounds of nonperishable
food given by Gundersen employees to benefit
WAFER Food Pantry

“We could not have done this without FacOps and Logistics support,” says a very grateful Tom. “Without them and their equipment we would not have been able pull this off, unless with great cost to the organization.” And the food donations will be a tremendous help. “We really, really need the food right now,” WAFER executive director Erin Waldhart, tells Tom.

 

The Great Lakes Apple Crunch

Today we celebrated the 🍎Great Lakes Great Apple Crunch !🍏

This special event helps raise awareness about eating better for our health and the environment, access and affordability of fruits and vegetables for everyone and supporting local farmers. It’s a great way to show support for the Farm to School program and Gundersen’s commitment to healthy eating. 🍎

22448250_10154822454542595_1857042983926177834_nCoulee Region Farm2School is a partnership between La Crosse County Health Department, Mayo Clinic Health System – Franciscan Healthcare, Gundersen Health System, and the School Districts of Bangor, Holmen, La Crescent-Hokah, La Crosse, Onalaska, and West Salem.

Happy Earth Day from Envision

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Earth Day was first celebrated more than 45 years ago, and is still celebrated on April 22nd of each year.  Rallies, conferences, outdoor activities and service projects are occurring worldwide today in observance of our planet and its protection.  Perhaps you have plans to participate!

At Gundersen, however, Earth Day is more than just a single day.

Being environmental stewards is a system-wide mission for Gundersen.  Gundersen has been nationally recognized for their innovative environmental initiatives, and is considered a leader in healthcare sustainability.  Improving the health of the communities Gundersen serves is a role taken very seriously, and is a shared responsibility of all employees at Gundersen.

One example of this is Gundersen’s current “Cut the Cup” employee challenge.  The goal of the challenge is to bring awareness to the number of disposable cups used at Gundersen, and to encourage employees to reduce their use of throw-away cups.  To participate in the challenge, employees must use reusable cups for the beverages they consume at work.  Employees are having fun with the challenge by taking creative photos of themselves using their reusable cups, and submitting them to a “show your mug” contest.  Every quarter, a prize is awarded to the employee with the most creative “mug shot”!  Check out some of the pictures below!

Are you doing anything at your workplace and/or home to support a healthy environment?  We want to hear about it!  Tell us by using the comment feature below this post.

Happy Earth Day!

www.gundersenenvision.org