As part of the holistic mountain resort, Old Edwards Hospitality Group (OEHG), with its focus on organic culinary and spa programs, Half-Mile Farm has sustainable and energy-efficient operations throughout the property. OEHG was the first hospitality provider in North Carolina to be awarded the NC Green Travel Award by the North Carolina Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach (NCDEAO) and the Center of Sustainable Tourism at East Carolina. NCDEAO is a governmental branch of the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDNR) that strives to protect the natural resources of North Carolina. The NC Green Travel awards are designed to encourage the tourism industry to "go green" by recognizing businesses that have established an energy team, recycle material, excel in water efficiency, practice energy conservation, and strive to practice green standards."
- Three sustainable farms with organic vegetable and herb gardens supplying five restaurants, reducing the impact of produce transportation
- Electric Car charging stations
- Natural composting at Old Edwards gardens
- Old Edwards employees participate in the annual Highlands Plateau Pick-Up, removing litter from area roads and highways
- The Old Edwards Club golf course uses water stations to replace bottled water
- Through a $1 per stay opt-out donation during our reservations process, Half-Mile Farm guests support the Highlands Nature Center and Biological Station. As of January 2023 in total at Old Edwards hotels, this has resulted in $105,350 of contributions through the generosity of our guests.
- Many employees within walking distance choose to walk to work rather than request the employee shuttle
- Reuse of office paper for internal printing
- Moving to digital communications for internal long-format materials and many guest-facing materials
- Biodegradable straws are available property-wide
- Paper shredding, cardboard, glass, plastic, and grease recycling bins property-wide. Packing materials reused or sent to Highlands Business Spot for recycling.
- Water stations and reusable bottles replace plastic water bottles across the property
- Optional linen change every other day offered to guests
- Molton Brown soap and shampoo dispensers replace single-use plastic bottles in guestrooms
- Energy-efficient light bulbs
- Ban on Styrofoam, polystyrene products, and internal to-go cup use. OEHG provides reusable cups to employees to reduce one-time-use cups.
- Any extra wine used in stocks and sauces
- Use local suppliers when possible to reduce carbon footprint
- Elimination of all newspapers
- Use local suppliers when possible to reduce our carbon footprint
Training & Management
- Posted literature to promote guests' involvement
- Continued research and purchasing from green companies
- Conducted Energy Assessment with the help of Waste Reduction Partners
- Partnered with Western Carolina University's Natural Resource Conservation and Management Program 2017 senior class for a research project focused on uncovering new approaches to green hospitality