Home' The Source : Second Quarter 2011 Contents We've all heard the
saying, "There are
plenty of fish in
the sea." But the
age is in danger of becoming false. Pressure
from environmental and human e ects are
putting our world's oceans at risk. Not only
do compromised oceans mean less food for
us, healthy marine ecosystems also are vital
for supporting livelihoods worldwide.
The growing threats to our oceans are
why HealthTrust's Food and Nutrition
Department has joined a new sustainable
seafood initiative by Entegra, its contracted
provider. HealthTrust's commitment is that
100 percent of its contracted seafood will
be certified as sustainable by the Marine
Stewardship Council or Best Aquaculture
Practices by 2015.
"This initiative is unparalleled," says
Chris Mantel, assistant vice president of
Food and Nutrition Services, Health Trust.
"It incorporates the industry's leading best
Why are our oceans in such distress?
Growing populations and increased seafood
consumption are the main reasons. Seafood
consumption worldwide has doubled since
1973. And by 2020, it's estimated that an
additional 32 million tons a year will be
needed to keep up with demand, according
to the Marine Stewardship Council.
"This tremendous increase in consump-
tion along with industrial fishing methods
that may damage the oceans' ecosystem has
placed major stress on certain ocean spe-
cies," Mantel says.
By choosing sustainable seafood,
HealthTrust members are supporting fish-
eries that farm or catch healthy populations
of fish in an environmentally friendly way.
But members don't have to worry about
compromised quality---or higher costs,
"Through this contract, HealthTrust is
able to o er members the most comprehen-
sive, highest quality sustainable fresh and
frozen seafood program in the industry,"
he says. "There's a full line of great-tasting
products for members' needs along with
competitive industry pricing."
Members can feel good about their
choices, too. Sustainable seafood is being
recognized across the world as the smartest
choice for ourselves and our oceans.
"Through Entegra, HealthTrust is joining
a global allegiance to ensure standards of ex-
cellence for environmental responsibility and
accountability in seafood," Mantel says. S
than a decade ago, the EPA and the American Hospital Association
committed to support e orts by hospitals to voluntarily eliminate all
mercury waste, and great progress has been made toward this goal.
Nevertheless, traces can still be found in many products used
in health care, from computer components to fluorescent lights
to antibacterial soap and common cleansers like bleach. So, Eckl
says, it's important to specify mercury-free alternatives and
restrict mercury-containing products such as sphygmomanometers
Eliminating halogenated organic flame-retardants. Brominated
flame-retardants don't break down easily in the environment and
their presence in people has increased a hundredfold over the past
30 years. Animal studies have linked them to immune suppression,
cancer and endocrine disruption. Chlorinated flame-retardants
accumulate in the liver and kidneys. They are suspected to be
carcinogens and reproductive toxicants and have been found in
household dust, water, sediments and other materials.
Reducing/eliminating VOCs. The aromas of a new car or carpet,
many plastics and paint come from gases released by a number of
substances. VOCs lower indoor air quality and can trigger asthma
attacks and other reactions.
Finding alternatives to disposable products. Polystyrene foam
cups and food containers are di cult to recycle and slow to bio-
degrade. Many facilities are looking at compostable or reusable
alternatives. Eckl notes that "biodegradable" can be another mis-
leading term, since decomposition is a lengthy process for many
materials. Look for compostable products instead, identifiable by
the Biodegradable Products Institute seal.
Reusing instead of disposing. Aside from food service items,
many other disposable products have reusable alternatives, includ-
ing isolation gowns, eggshell mattresses, sharps containers, bedpans
and pulse oximetry probes. Switching to these will reduce upfront
purchase costs as well as the cost (and impact) of disposal.
Eckl says Practice Greenhealth is working with both manufactur-
er and health-care members on a first-of-its kind EPP specification
guide for health-care products. The organization is piloting guide-
lines for several product areas including IV bags and exam gloves,
as well as copy paper. S
HealthTrust's Food and Nutrition Department
Joins an Important New Global Initiative to O er
Sustainable Seafood to Members
30 Second Quarter 2011 | The Source
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