Cup and Top Cafe is pleased to be included in the cover story of the summer issue of “Going Green – The Valley guide to an eco-friendly lifestyle” (a publication of the Greenfield Recorder).  The article is about Valley restaurants reducing their waste.  Thank you to Maureen Turner for writing the article. The full text of the article can be seen here.  Or pick up a copy of Going Green at a local store.

At Florence’s Cup and Top Café, customer response has helped owner Helen Kahn refine the green ethos that’s been part of her business since she opened her doors in 2006. After one customer approached her about the café’s use of aluminum foil to wrap its sandwiches, Kahn searched out recycled paper to use instead. And the café began composting its produce scraps and offering them to people who raise backyard chickens — at the suggestion of another customer, Kahn notes.

Other customers take the Cup and Top’s coffee grounds to use as compost in their gardens. The café does a lot of recycling, tries to minimize packaging for take-out orders, serves its food and drinks with real plates, utensils and cups — not disposable stuff — and encourages customers to bring in reusable mugs for on-the-go drinks. (The café also employs other sustainable practices, from buying food from local growers to using green cleaning products.) Much of the work of limiting food waste — in restaurants and homes alike — begins with initial decisions about what to buy and make. “We work very hard to not purchase or make more food than we will sell. I think we have a very good track record in terms of not having to throw out excess food,” Kahn says. “It is always hard to predict how many customers you will have in a day or week and what they will purchase, so we make small batches for our daily specials.” The café also pays close attention to its regular food purchasing, adjusting its orders as need be.

Cup & Top Cafe | 1 N. Main Street | Florence, MA | 413-585-0445 | Cupandtop@hotmail.com

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