Say No to Plastics
The 19th Annual Wellfleet OysterFest goes plastic free!
WELLFLEET – September 22, 2019. The environmental costs of plastic have become increasingly apparent and municipalities throughout the Cape are making changes. Wellfleet is one of six towns on Cape Cod that recently prohibited municipal purchase or distribution of single-use plastic containers, a Cape-wide initiative introduced and championed in 2019 by Sustainable Practices. While in Wellfleet this ban does not apply to organizations using town property, Wellfleet OysterFest is taking action now. “Over the last few years, trash generated at the festival has increased, so festival organizer Wellfleet SPAT decided to take steps to reduce the impact the event has on the environment, particularly the marine environment where shellfish are grown and harvested,” says Executive Director Michele Insley. As a result, this year’s festival will feature a dramatic reduction of plastic thanks to new policies put into place with both food and beverage vendors.
The 19th annual Wellfleet OysterFest will be held on October 19 & 20, 2019 from 10 am – 5pm, rain or shine, and is instituting a firm ‘no plastic policy’. Attendees can expect to be served food items on ‘backyard-compostable’ paper products – and plastic utensils will be a thing of the past. Some food vendors plan to use returnable metal utensils just like what you would use at home!
Beverages will feature far more aluminum – with the debut of canned beer. Decade long event partners Boston Beer/Sam Adams and Truro Vineyards will be canning their beer and wine. Those cans will be collected and recycled thanks to a partnership with non-profit Sustainable Practices and beer distributor L. Knife and Son. A few beverages will be poured on draft including the event’s special edition brew, Wellfleet Oyster Stout, which will be served in a refillable stainless steel souvenir cup. As in the past, hydration stations will be available and attendees are encouraged to bring their own, refillable, non-glass water bottle to capitalize on this free offering. Canned water will be sold by food vendors thanks to another event partner, Open Water.
This shift has been years in development as a result of collaboration with the Wellfleet Recycling Committee, M.A. Frazier Disposal, the businesses and organizations mentioned above and many committed individuals. “We have a waste and pollution crisis on our hands so SPAT has made the decision to do our part by reducing the waste generated at the event,” says Insley.
The Wellfleet OysterFest is produced by non-profit organization, Wellfleet SPAT, Shellfish Promotion and Tasting, whose mission is to support the region’s shellfishing and aquaculture industries. “We do this through scholarships, community grant awards, promotional events like the ‘Fest and other initiatives like this one,” says Executive Director Michele Insley. “The dire impact of single-use plastic on our ocean, marine life, the broader environment, and human health are too powerful to ignore. We hope the ‘Fest becomes a model for other events and reminds the public to consider their consumption by committing toward more sustainable packaging and products.”