The Langham, Boston Honored for Environmental Leadership with Oyster Shell Recycling

Downtown Boston Hotel has been a leader in recycling oyster shell working with a local non-profit the Mass Oyster Project who is working to restore oysters.

The Langham, Boston Honored for Environmental Leadership with Oyster Shell Recycling
Boston, MA, February 09, 2015 --( The Langham, Boston’s Executive Chef Mark Sapienza was honored yesterday with the coveted Green Oyster Award for his institution's leadership in oyster shell recycling. The Langham has been actively recycling shell for three years in an activity which began as part of an overall sustainability effort across the hotel.

Chef Sapienza responded to an employee's suggestion and his organization's leadership has attracted other Boston area restaurants and hotels to follow suit. As a result, a program that began moving shell with five gallon buckets has progressed to the point of using roll-off containers.

Recycled oyster shell is a valuable material as once aged, it can be used as a substrate for oyster restoration. Young free-floating oyster spat need a hard material to settle on and oyster shell is an ideal material. Restoring oysters has several benefits including:

Creating habitat and biomass to support the fishery. One hundred other species will live in an oyster reef. These creatures include shrimps, crabs, eels, rock gunnels, menhaiden and lobsters. By providing nooks and crannies through the oyster reef a whole food chain is developed that supports larger fish including striped bass and bluefish.

Improving water quality. An oyster can filter 40 gallons of water per day. They remove silt, bacteria and remove nitrogen that can cause harmful algal blooms. Having water that is clearer improves the aquatic environment for important plant life, such as eel grass as well.

Said Theresa Baybutt, Shell Recycling Coordinator for Mass Oyster, "We are pleased to have this opportunity to highlight the Langham for their commitment to the environment and their leadership in this program. Mark and the Langham team are a joy to work with."

Collected shell is taken to an aging facility at Save That Stuff, Inc. in Charlestown, MA. Save That Stuff is a comprehensive recycling, waste management, and food waste diversion company, with Zero Waste goals. Save That Stuff has been highly supportive of the program since its inception. Once the shell has been aged for a year to remove the potential of disease pathogens, the shell can be used in restoration programs around the State.

Boston area restaurants that are interested in participating can email
Mass Oyster Project
Theresa Baybutt