Eco-friendly eating is a big business these days. Practices that are eco-friendly, and products that are local and organic are important to customers. From humanely raised meat sources to sustainable linen services, there is a multitude of ways to minimize your environmental impact.
Your Eco-Friendly Restaurant
In addition to the restaurant itself, the food should reflect your stance on the environment. Wherever possible, offer vegetarian options, which are more eco-friendly than meat. In general, customers are willing to pay more for options viewed as eco-friendly, which makes it a wise choice for restaurant owners.
1) Reduce Waste
There are many ways to reduce waste in a restaurant setting. While many establishments pride themselves on big portions and excess, opt for reasonable portion sizes. In the restrooms use real hand towels or air dryers. Wherever possible, use reusable products, such as coasters, menus, and napkins. Ensure that your hospitality products can be laundered and used again and again.
Almost every community in the country offers recycling programs. Check with your local waste and recycling company to determine what the specific guidelines are. In most states, you can recycle plastic, glass, paper, cardboard, and aluminum. Many recycling companies also handle old electronics, kitchen equipment, batteries, light bulbs, paints, and chemicals. Check to see if an organization in your area collects grease for recycling, turning into biodiesel.
3) Practice Energy Efficiency
It takes a lot of energy to run a restaurant, from cold storage, cooking equipment, and temperature control. However, there are many practical and easy steps you can take to reduce your energy footprint. Use Energy Star appliances and energy-efficient lighting. For maximum impact, invest in renewable energy sources, such as solar panels or wind turbines. Going green can end up saving you a significant amount of money on your electric bill!
4) Use Sustainable Products
Sustainable products are preferable to disposable, both for their eco-friendly properties, and their attractive appearance. Use cloth linens, including napkins and tablecloths. Provide employee uniforms, cleaning towels and rugs that can be regularly cleaned and reused
Use real dishware, utensils, and glasses. Offer customers recyclable take-out containers.
5) Conserve Water
For landscaping, consider installing a water catchment and reuse system, such as a rain barrel. Use hardy plants, and set sprinklers on a timer to maximize absorption. Opt for low-pressure faucets in the kitchen and bathrooms. Only serve drinking water if the customer requests it.
Responsible Practices for a Competitive Edge
Not only is an eco-friendly restaurant good for the environment, but it can be very good for business. Social and environmental responsibility is important to people, which can give your restaurant an edge. Be sure to inform your patrons that you’re making the environment a priority in your business. Include this information on your website, menu and printed marketing materials.
Wilkins Linen understands the demand on eco-friendly restaurants. For more information about how we can help, Contact Us.