Sunday, April 12, 2015

Happy 10th Anniversary Sustainable Work!

My goodness.  Today is the 10th anniversary of this blog.

The photo is from the award ceremony where we were honored as the United States Small Business New Product of the Year by the National Society of Professional Engineers.

The National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) represents the highest engineering standards in the world, and our work, our inventions, were chosen as the best new product created by a small business in the country that year (2005).

What is most cool about that story, and about the work I've been trying to write about here at Sustainable Work, is that the NSPE used definitions of small business used by the federal Small Business Administration (SBA).  Small business by those standards are any company of 500 employees or less.  

I tell people the best part of this story is not that we won, but that we did it with 4 people.

And we changed the world.  Those designs are now recycling millions of gallons of oil worldwide that used to be lost as wastewater.  Four strong, daring, stubborn people.   It brings to mind the great Margaret Mead quote:  "Never doubt that a group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."

I'm very proud of the work I've done and of the body of writing I've built up in this blog over the past decade.

Below is what I first wrote on April 12, 2005. I was in a budget hotel in Dubuque, smearing oil and blood all over the notebook following a difficult - but successful - installation of one of our fluid recycling systems at the local John Deere plant.

I'm still trying to do what I put in this first post, 10 years ago today. I'm more confident than ever we can pull it off. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2005
What I'm trying to do.


I'm glad you've found you're way here. Welcome!

I've got this idea that I'd like to start a million more small, sustainable enterprises. However, I'm 50 something and I have a perfectly wonderful 90 hour a week job now. So I'm just going to have to talk about it here in my spare time. Hopefully I can help other people along this path. Can we get to a million new small enterprises? Come on along. Let's try. I look forward to sharing this site with you.

All the best,


Friday, April 10, 2015

Congratulations Chef Paul Virant - Check out this video

Link below to a great new video about Chef Paul Virant.

Paul is a friend and an inspiration. At Innovation Kitchens, we’re working with Paul to bring his remarkable recipes to a wider audience. Look for Paul’s groundbreaking cookbook, The Preservation Kitchen. Innovation Kitchens is a culinary foundry for building artisan food brands.

Paul is a finalist for this year's James Beard Award.  Congratulations Paul!

Watch this beautiful video about Chef Paul Virant's work.   (Posted here April 6, 2015)

Local foods year-round. Innovation Kitchens has the model.

Innovation Kitchens provides local foods year-round.     Chefs and food service pros can order our fresh-frozen, farm identified local ingredients any time of the year.  Here's a nice photo and post from our friends at Thrive foodery in Wausau, WI.  "Tonight we have Fresh Pacific Cod served with Wisconsin Sweet Corn Polenta finished with a Double Tomato Bruschetta. Thank you to our friends at Innovation Kitchens LLC for providing us with some beautiful produce!"

We've developed a smart new business plan for local and specialty foods year-round that focuses on supporting family farms.  Chefs and food service pros can order our fresh-frozen, farm-identified local ingredients any time of the year. 
The 2015 harvest is coming up.  Does your organization want to increase it's offering of local foods year-round?  Let's talk.

Thanks Chef Elizabeth at Thrive foodery!