In 2011, Concord Mills accepted the SFCI Shopping Mall Pilot role with an emphasis on food waste collection for composting, excess food donation and plastic film recycling. A strong relationship developed with Mecklenburg County Government along with a powerful network of Charlotte businesses and organizations.

As a sub-grantee of the EPA Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte, NC Grant to Ei Strategic Ally Green Blue's Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC), Ei uses the Charlotte relationships | network to maximize grant benefits. The ZWA Blog article, Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte, NC gives an overview of grant objectives, tasks and goal.

This page chronicles Ei Charlotte visits along with supporting blog articles and Ei FB albums.

SPC Advance Conference

October 6 – 8, 2015
Charlotte, NC
The Ei | EPA Grant Team returned to Charlotte for GreenBlue’s SPC Advance Conference. With the grant extension period ending on September 30, the conference was the perfect opportunity to wrap-up grant action. Ei Founder Holly Elmore moderated the conference Scaling Up Composting In North America: Presentation And Working Session. The ZWA Blog article, Sustainability: an industry defining itself, recaps the conference, including a feature on the Ei-moderated panel, while the Ei FB album, 10-15 GreenBlue's SPC Advance Conference, is the pictorial recap.

Charlotte opportunities segue into ACTION

July 14 - 16, 2015
Charlotte, NC

The Ei | EPA Grant Team met in Charlotte for three powerful days filled with meetings, tours and dinners. With introductions substantiated in prior visits, the meetings were follow-up in nature with actions points integral within the respective agendas. The ZWA Blog article, Charlotte opportunities segue into ACTION chronicles the empowering Charlotte visit, while the The Ei FB album, July 2015 Ei Charlotte Visit, provides a pictorial recap of the visit.


Charlotte: Land of Opportunities

February 2 - 4, 2015
Charlotte, NC

The EPA Grant | Ei Team converged on Charlotte the week of February 2 for a series of meetings and tours at the major sports facilities, the convention center and local schools. SPC Senior Manager Anne Bedarf was supported in meetings with SMAT members: Sarah Martell of Innovia Films, Rick Lombardo of NaturBag, Tim Goodman of NatureWorks, and Sarah Martinez of Eco-Products.

For the February 2015 Charlotte visit, Ei Founder Holly Elmore and Kim Charick of the EPA arrived a day early for Water Use | Toxicity and other Ei-specific meetings. Rob Phocas, City of Charlotte energy & sustainability manager, was first on the meeting itinerary.

The ZWA Blog article, Charlotte: Land of Opportunities, is an overview of the powerful Charlotte visit; the Ei FB album, Charlotte Visit: EPA Grant & Beyond, is a pictorial recap.


Midsummer Charlotte Visit

July 29, 2014
Charlotte, NC
The Ei Team visited Charlotte for three days of meetings, tours and strategy sessions with Mecklenburg County Government and Ei Pioneer Keter Environmental Services. Visit the ZWA Blog article Ei Charlotte Visit: Busy, Productive & Fun! for a visit overview. The Ei FB album, July | August 2014 Ei Charlotte Visit gives a pictorial recap.

EPA Grant Team Visit

April 21 - 23, 2014
Charlotte, NC

The EPA Grant Team visited Charlotte for three days filled with meetings, tours and strategy sessions. The ZWA Blog article, Charlotte Focuses on Food Waste with EPA Grant Support, documents the three action-packed days of meetings, tours and recruitments. The Ei FB album, Charlotte Focuses on Food Waste with EPA Grant Support, supports the article with a pictorial recap.


Charlotte Ei Partner Tours

March 4 & 5, 2013
Charlotte, NC

HMSHost and Simon Property Group hosted the third Ei Partner Tours, highlighting the successes of the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Shopping Mall Pilot Concord Mills, a Simon Mall with the food court operated by HMSHost. In addition to Ei Partner presentations and Concord Mills tours, the Ei Partners visited Earth Farms (destination for Concord Mill’s food waste), SouthPark (another Simon Mall in Charlotte), and the Charlotte-Douglas Airport where HMSHost operates foodservice outlets.

The IMPACT Blog post, Charlotte Ei Partner Tours , gives a tours overview while the ZWA Blog post, Bring the Possible Out of Impossible , dives into zero waste successes. For pictorial recaps of the powerful two days visit the Ei FB albums: 03-04-13 Charlotte Ei Partner Tours - Day One & 03-05-13 Charlotte Ei Partner Tours - Day Two .

Below are downloads for the tours itinerary, participant list and Ei Partner PPT presentations:

Charlotte Ei Ptr Tour Itinerary Charlotte Ei Ptr Tour Itinerary (42 KB)

Charlotte Ei Ptr Tour Participants List Charlotte Ei Ptr Tour Participants List (42 KB)

03-13 Ei Overview and Intro Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 Ei Overview and Intro Ei Ptr Tours PPT (551 KB)

03-13 CleanRiver Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 CleanRiver Ei Ptr Tours PPT (3167 KB)

03-13 Concord Mills Update Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 Concord Mills Update Ei Ptr Tours PPT (1128 KB)

03-13 Grease Lock Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 Grease Lock Ei Ptr Tours PPT (2818 KB)

03-13 HMSHost Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 HMSHost Ei Ptr Tours PPT (2018 KB)

03-13 Tomra Orwak Ei Ptr Tours PPT 03-13 Tomra Orwak Ei Ptr Tours PPT (1217 KB)


SFCI Concord Mills Pilot

August 21 & 22, 2012
Charlotte, NC

In August 2012 Concord Mills officially accepted invite the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Shopping Mall Pilot invite. Immediately, the Ei Team made a short, exciting visit to Charlotte to jump start several test projects within the pilot. The ZWA Blog article, ACTION: Theme for the SFCI Shopping Mall Pilot, provides a trip overview. For a pictorial recap of the Ei Charlotte visit, see the Ei FB album, 08-12 Charlotte SFCI Trip.


Charlotte Visit

February 21 & 22, 2012
Charlotte, NC

Efficient and Effective was the theme for the Charlotte excursion. Ei Partner Lorraine White of M-Pass joined Ei Founder Holly Elmore for the whirlwind visit. In less than 24 hours, the dynamic duo had excellent presentation meetings with an Ei Supporter followed by a lovely dinner. The following day included two tours along with a luncheon where Holly was the key presenter. The ZWA Blog article, A Quick & Powerful Charlotte Visit provides a trip overview, while the Ei FB album 02-12 Charlotte Visit is a pictorial recap.


Charlotte Road Trip - Simon & Hilex Poly

January 09 & 10, 2012
Charlotte, NC

In early January, Louis Herrera, Hilex Poly National Sales Director, Matt Hupp, Simon Property Group Director of Waste & Recycling and Ei Founder Holly Elmore headed to Charlotte for a two-day road trip. With Simon the nation's largest mall operator and Hilex Poly the world's largest plastic bag manufacturer, the trip was an opportunity to take the many 2011 conversations and meetings into action steps. The ZWA Blog article, 2011 Planning = 2012 ACTION gives an overview of the road trip and meetings, while the Ei FB albums, 01-9&10-12 DAY 1 Charlotte Road Trip - Simon & Hilex Poly and 01-10&11-12 DAY 2 Charlotte Road Trip showcase the two days in pictures.


Inaugural Charlotte Visit

October 19, 2011
Charlotte, NC

Ei visited Charlotte for a series of meetings and tours to explore the landscape for the Zero Waste Zones and a Sustainable Food Court Initiative (SFCI) pilot. The day started with a tour of Concord Mills, a Simon mall, followed by a back-of-the-house tour of the Charlotte Douglas International Airport. and ending with the Charlotte Green Team meeting. It was a rewarding visit for Ei Founder Holly Elmore and Doug Kunnemann, SFCI Co-Chair with NatureWorks. The ZWA Blog article, Fertile Charlotte Grounds provides a trip overview, while the Ei FB album 10-19-11 Charlotte Visit gives a pictorial recap.