How to Go Green
According to a survey conducted by Technomic, 63 percent of consumers are likely to visit food services seen as socially conscious. While 53 percent of food operators believe that having “an actionable social responsibility strategy is needed to compete in the next 2 years.” Today the restaurant industry is the largest energy user, and on average uses:
- 500,000 kilowatt hours of electricity
- 20,000 therms of natural gas
- 800,000 gallons of water
- 100,000 pounds of garbage
Thus producing 4.90 tons of carbon dioxide per year per restaurant. Organizations like Zero Foodprint and Dine Green are working to help restaurants eliminate or reduce their carbon footprint by providing education and certifications that meet their environmental conscious standards.
How to Go Green
Going green isn’t just replacing all your kitchen equipment with energy star appliances, although that would help, it could involve:
- choosing a sustainable food source
- using local ingredients
- using recyclable menus, dishes, and utensils
- discarding Styrofoam
- training staff
- paperless advertising
- recycle or compost
Pizza Fusion, a chain in southern Florida, issues each store a hybrid vehicle to make deliveries. While Burgerville, a 39-chain restaurant in Oregon and Washington, collects and recycles oil and grease into bio-diesel fuels.
Going green will not only save our environment but also money. According to the article, Can Restaurants Go Green, Earn Green?, if 10 percent of restaurants replaced one incandescent light bulb with a compact fluorescent bulb. The restaurants could save up to $2.8 million. Restaurants could also:
- Use low-flow valves in dishwashers to save 73,000 gallons of water per year
- Replace standard urinals with waterless ones to save 40,000 gallons of water
- install flow restrictions to faucets in guests bathrooms–B.R Guest Restaurant in NYC saved 5 million gallons of water
What socially conscious step is your restaurant taking to reduce their footprint? Let us know by commenting below!