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Shopping South End for Ingredients to Make a Ford Escape


I know the title sounds a little out there but it’s true that last weekend I drove around South End on a Ford Escape Ingredient Shopping Trip.  An opportunity was presented to me to test drive a Ford Escape for a few days courtesy of Keith Hawthorne Ford Lincoln of Charlotte with the goal to share about the sustainable features of this car. South End is a neighborhood where people care about their environmental impact and since we are focused on growing our sustainable efforts it seemed like a fun exercise to break the Ford Escape down into it’s sustainable ingredients and go shopping through South End to see if I could find them.  Here goes…


The Ford Escape is 85% recyclable, which means they used ingredients like coconut fibers, soy foam, wheat straw and denim. I felt pretty confident I would find some or part of these ingredients at Healthy Home Market so that was my first stop.

SAMSUNGA couple laps through the store and nothing. I was about to stop an employee and ask, ‘I’m looking for ingredients to make a Ford Escape…can you point me towards the coconut?” and then I spotted them in the produce section and added to my shopping cart.

From produce I headed to the bulk goods aisle and found lots of wheat options. No wheat straw but close enough to capture this ingredient and check off the list.

SAMSUNGIn the past, I thought that a sustainable car meant it was electric or some kind of hybrid. I never thought from the angle of the ingredients of how the car is made. The coconut fibers were used in the lip gate and the wheat straw was incorporated throughout the car in order to make it lighter (which saves gas) and reduces the use of plastics. On to more ingredients!

SAMSUNGSAMSUNGContinuing a couple blocks north, I stopped by the Atherton Market, our local farmers market, to continue my Ford Escape Ingredient Shopping Trip. Coconut and wheat were off the list so I was hunting soy to represent the soy foam used in the Ford Escape for the seats and head restraints.
SAMSUNGI did find a market vendor that made soy candles along with a variety of great soaps. True, soy candles are not soy foam but trust me, it’s much more comfortable to sit on soy foam than soy candles. I already had wheat but did take a couple pictures of vendors making use of wheat through their delicious bread creations at Duke’s Bread and Heist Brewery.


SAMSUNGLooking at the Ford Escape Shopping List, the car contains more than 10 pounds of scrap cotton from recycled blue jeans, sweaters and T-shirts. There are several places in South End to find these items but I made a stop by Blank Canvas.

Blank Canvas Ford EscapeIn no way am I suggesting that Blank Canvas has scraps of anything, they have fantastic clothing options but I knew I could find some denim and other items on my list. My guess is the folks at Ford will let you wear these clothes for a long time before they work them into their next Ford Escape. If they can recycle discarded products like these then they can divert them from landfill and reduce the impact of mining virgin materials.

SAMSUNGBefore I started the Ford Escape Ingredient Shopping Trip, I did make a stop by Food Truck Friday the night before and in the picture you can see our little blue recycling container near the front of the car. We had lots of requests from the folks coming to Food Truck Friday for us to offer some kind of recycling for their plastic bottles.

SAMSUNGBeyond putting these bottles in the blue container, I never thought about what happened to them afterwards and all you Food Truck Friday-ers will be happy to know the Ford Escape contains 100 % recycled plastics and the carpet is made from 25 recycled 20-ounce plastic bottles. Who knew your recycling efforts at Food Truck Friday could be used in this way!

I’ve heard companies tout “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” and wondered if it as just a slogan or a commitment and after my Ford Escape Ingredient Shopping Trip through South End I know they are committed.

I do want to thank the folks at Keith Hawthorne Ford Lincoln of Charlotte and Keith Hawthorne Ford of Belmont for providing the Ford Escape to drive around for the the weekend. Such friendly staff that took a great deal of time to walk me through all the functionality and features of this car.

*Other than driving the car for free for three days, I was not compensated in exchange for this post


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