Members of Delaware North’s Procurement Department and a cross-section of company culinarians and operators met May 14 for a category evaluation working session. The monthly initiative is part of the department’s new strategic category management approach designed to create a platform of open dialogue and effective decision making across food, beverage and supply categories.

Disposable cups and cutlery – which account for nearly $7 million combined annual spend, 97 suppliers and over 1,100 SKUs (the number assigned to products for inventory management) – were this month’s focus. The working group discussed ways to standardize the SKU assortment and supplier consolidation while concurrently identifying opportunities to implement across all subsidiaries.

Carol Milligan, Delaware North category manager of disposables and prepared and packaged food, provided product education and reviewed current market conditions, pricing and recyclability during a session held at Delaware North-managed Hamburg Gaming in Hamburg, N.Y.

Delaware North Director of Sustainability Deb Friedel also attended the working session. She provided valuable input on the benefits of making environmentally conscious and sustainable options available for all Delaware North guests. Following on the heels of the successful Last Straw campaign, with Friedel’s support, the group drafted an overarching commitment for single-use disposables – aiming toward sourcing 100% of the category from recyclable, renewable, post-consumer content, compostable or credible certifications by 2025.