Kansas City Chiefs ‘go nuts’ over compostable peanut bag

First-of-its-kind compostable packaging for peanuts debuts at Arrowhead Stadium, scoring a victory for the Kansas City Chief’s Extra Yard for the Environment program.

Arrowhead Stadium has become the first-ever professional sports venue to sell a prepacked compostable peanut bag.
Arrowhead Stadium has become the first-ever professional sports venue to sell a prepacked compostable peanut bag.

The Kansas City Chiefs football team is going the extra yard by scoring a major victory for the environment. Thanks to a collaboration between BASF, Aramark, and Hampton Farms, BASF reports that Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO, has become the first-ever professional sports venue to sell a prepacked compostable peanut bag.

The compostable peanut bag is part of the Chiefs’ environmental initiative, Extra Yard for the Environment, which is designed to devise and implement new green policies for the Chiefs, while also raising awareness for sustainability efforts at Arrowhead Stadium. Debuting at the November 26, 2017 game, the compostable peanut bag is being sold throughout general concessions and in-seat vending, with the goal of expanding to other areas of Arrowhead Stadium following the pilot phase.

Snack food packaging was chosen as an area improvement as more than 15,000 bags of peanuts are sold in concessions at Arrowhead Stadium each year. To find ways to further advance the Extra Yard for the Environment program and Arrowhead’s waste-diversion methods, the Chiefs approached Aramark, the team’s general concessionaire.

Says BASF, when it comes to selling peanuts, Aramark’s roots run deep. The company’s founder began selling peanuts out of his car in 1932, laying the foundation for what would eventually become snack vending. Aramark now sells more than 1.1 million bags of peanuts annually at sporting events and, once again, is playing a role in transforming how peanuts are sold.

“With peanuts being among the best-selling snack foods at sports events, the introduction of this compostable peanut bag is a potential game-changer,” says Carl Mittleman, President of Aramark’s Sports and Entertainment division.

To tackle this challenge, Aramark asked BASF to draw up a game plan to divert peanut bags from the landfill. Working with peanut roaster Hampton Farms, they converted all parties of the supply chain—from the packaging converter to the composter—to deliver a compostable peanut bag.

As part of the 18-month developmental process, BASF worked with Missouri Organic Recycling to test packaging prototypes to ensure the final product meets Missouri Organic’s stringent composting guidelines for quality and safety. According to BASF, the end product is the first-of-its-kind commercially available peanut bag to be made from BASF’s certified compostable ecovio® biopolymer and Epotal® adhesive.

“Over the past few years we have put an increased focus on our sustainability program, Extra Yard for the Environment, and have worked to find new, innovative ways to reduce our organization’s carbon footprint,” says Chiefs Vice President of Stadium Operations Brandon Hamilton. “We have received tremendous support from our partners, such as Aramark, and have been fortunate to work with people and organizations like BASF and Hampton Farms who are dedicated to helping us meet our goals. We are excited to unveil this product, as we believe it will have a positive impact on our efforts in Arrowhead Stadium and will also spread to other venues to make a positive change within the industry.”

Says Rick McGee, Vice President of Sales, Hampton Farms, “As the largest roaster of peanuts for the sports and entertainment industry, our customers are interested in reducing landfill waste. This bag represents an exciting future for us as well as for our customers.”

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