Restaurants are increasingly finding basic ways to reduce their impact on the environment like recycling and incorporating energy-efficient appliances. Many restaurants are also shifting their focus on food waste to renewable energy and biodegradable packaging. We have gathered 4 ways that restaurant operators can incorporate sustainable-operations in their establishment. Let’s begin!
Sourcing local ingredients.
The first way that restaurants can make an impact on the planet is by sourcing mostly local ingredients to cut down on carbon use. Using locally sourced ingredients offers many advantages for chefs. Food that comes from the area is often fresher and more flavorful than items that are shipped in from far away. Working directly with farms is a great way to boost the local economy, and cutting down on the travel distance of your meat and produce to reduce your carbon footprint.
Food compost at your restaurant.
Another way that restaurants can build a sustainable restaurant is by composting waste in the kitchen to divert it from landfills. Diverting waste from dumpsters with recycling or composting can often cut trash-collection costs. Many restaurants can combat food waste by implementing specials that feature ingredients that are over-supplied. According to the EPA, 60-80% of garbage produced by restaurants was food waste. By composting, you can reduce your environmental impact by keeping waste out of the landfill.
Sourcing renewable energy.
Thirdly, restaurant owners can make environmental improvements like adding LED lighting and low-flow plumbing devices to help keep utility costs down. You can also decrease your heat usage by lowering water temperatures at your establishment and you can do so by checking the requirements for your area to optimize your water temperature so you don’t use water that’s hotter than it needs to be. Conserving energy can be as easy as turning off a light switch from idle equipment or rooms that aren’t being used.
Incorporating biodegradable packaging.
Lastly, restaurants can expand their dining wear options for compostable, recyclable, and biodegradable products like bags and forks for everyday use. Many restaurants can take into consideration what they can change from their daily operations. Biodegradable plastic production processes take 65% less energy than required to produce petroleum-based plastics, according to Food Service Warehouse. There are many earth-friendly products like spalted maple wood, which comes from the decaying maple trees which have already fallen on the forest floor.
After reading some of the ways for restaurants to increase their efforts in helping the environment, do you think you can implement some of these changes to your establishment? Let us know in the comments below!