An interview between Monique DiGiorgio, Local First Managing Director and Katie Burford, owner and founder of Cream Bean Berry
Q: Congratulations on the Green Business Leadership Award! Can you tell us what that award means to you and what it means to be a “green business”?
A: Well, it means a lot to me to be recognized for our efforts to produce ice cream in an environmentally sustainable manner and gaining the award helps to draw attention to that. I want people to know us for the quality of our ice cream, but as a business I feel it is important ethically to be environmentally sustainable.
Q: What are some of the “green” practices you employ in your business?
A: There are a few different areas where we focus our environmental practices: conservation of energy and resources using energy star rated equipment when available, fixtures that use less power, and then also in purchasing disposables that are produced with less waste that are recyclable and bio-degradable and also in our sourcing — getting organic and local ingredients that have less of an impact on the environment in their production.
On locally sourced foods:
One of the challenges when I started is looking at recipes I had and the ingredients that are available locally — and they don’t always match up. Over the years, I have been able to identify more and more sources for local ingredients and then also become knowledgeable about what is available locally and look for ways I can incorporate that — so reverse engineering my recipes based on what is available.
Photo Credit: Bonnie Pacheco
Q: What does it mean to be a local, independent business?
A: There is so much I can say about that topic! It’s given me a whole new appreciation for my community and how, as a business owner, you are part of an interdependent ecosystem. That is something I under-appreciated when I started — that I was entering a community of supportive counterparts who would really go above and beyond to help with my success. And now that I have been doing this for awhile, I try to pay that back and be a resource for other people that are getting started.