Innovation in Sustainable Operations: Standing Stone Brewing Co.
By Gretchen Holzgang
Standing Stone Brewing Co. in Ashland is taking green restaurant operations to a new level.
When it comes to running a sustainable operation in the restaurant industry, Standing Stone Brewing Co. is setting the bar pretty high.
While working toward some lofty long-term goals — including net-zero energy use and zero waste — the Ashland-based brewery and restaurant has made impressive strides in greening its supply chain and reducing its eco-footprint.
In addition to sourcing as locally as possible, Standing Stone has started “insourcing” with its own farming operation.
Over the summer, the brewery started its rooftop garden. The garden started with herbs, but has since expanded to include vegetables such as tomatoes and cucumbers in the summer and beets, kale and carrots for fall and winter.
Taking it a step further, Standing Stone launched the Standing Stone Farm Project. At the beginning of October, the brewery began leasing 265 acres of agricultural land from the city of Ashland, just one mile from the restaurant.
“(What Standing Stone is doing) takes real commitment, and creativity, and patience and a sense of humor,” said Ashland Mayor John Stromberg.
By Oct. 23, Standing Stone moved animals and its composting operation on the farm. So far the farms residents include eight cows, a sheep, a goat and more than 200 chickens in a variety of heritage breeds, including Delaware, New Hampshire and Wyandotte chickens.
About half of the chickens are used for egg production, while the rest are being bred for poultry.
“We have a lot of staff on board who are excited about taking (farming) under our wing,” said Alex Amarotico, co-owner of Standing Stone.
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