Greening Your Barbecue

On July 13, 2010 The Ferndale Environmental Sustainability Commission teamed up with Western Market, Michigan Green Safe Products, and other local businesses to host a Greening your Barbecue demonstration at the Kulick Community Center.

Western Market helped out by grilling up free samples of their all-natural, grass-fed and organic meats.  They also grilled some fresh yellow squash and zucchini.  The FESC provided meatless alternatives, including tofu, veggie kabobs, and meatless hotdogs.   

Douglas Christie, Chair of the FESC, instructed about fifty of our friends and neighbors from the Ferndale area on how they can enjoy outdoor summer cooking, while still keeping the environment in mind.  

One tip is to use either propane or wood-based briquettes instead of traditional charcoal.  Charcoal is made with fossil fuels, which are quickly being depleted.  Propane burns clean and is less harmful to the atmosphere, and wood products are renewable and can give your food a delicious smoky flavor.

When disposable plates and utensils are desired, there are more natural alternatives.  Paper plates can be recycled, and there are now sugar and corn based cups, forks, spoons and knives.  “Those kind of products still take a long time to break down, but the key is that they don’t leech chemicals back into the ground as they do,” Christie said.

He also presented other green products, like all natural bug repellants, and reusable bags instead of plastic ones for carrying the foods you plan to grill.  He emphasized the benefits of buying locally, saying that it helps the economy of the community while reducing transportation costs and environmental impact.

Western Market offers organic produce, tofu, and frozen vegetarian foods.  Organic produce does not use chemical fertilizers and pesticides which have harmful effects on the ecosystem and on our bodies.  Check out for more information on their products. 


The crowd enjoys the barbecue in front of the Kulick Center

Marketing coordinator Crystal shows off just some of our organic and local products

FESC Chair Douglas Christie getting the party started.

Yellow & Blue - high quality wine, great price, and innovative Tetra-Pak is like a juice box for adults

Woodfire briquettes are a green alternative to charcoal


Steve doing some prep work.

Zucchini and yellow squash fresh off the grill

Tasty all natural and organic meats.

Local community farming expert Trevor Johnson enjoying a veggie kabob.

Grilling up yellow squash and zucchini, brushed with extra virgin olive oil and seasoned with Matt's Mix.


Friends and neighbors enjoy the day.

Veggie kabobs.

Western Market at the Kulick Center.

Tofu burger

Steve educating bbq-goers about the meats and produce we carry.