FOLD-PAK a RockTenn Company
FOLD-PAK a RockTenn Company

3 Tried and Tested Methods of Promoting Sustainability in Your Restaurant

Monday, 27 October 2014 16:32 by dfederico

Like all businesses, restaurants are facing increased pressure to be earth-friendly and rely on sustainable business practices, but for many restaurants the route to green status isn’t obvious. Here are three tried and true methods to make your restaurant earth friendly, from the take-out food containers you use to the lighting overhead.


#1: Use earth-friendly take-out food containers. No matter what kind of restaurant you run, to go containers are a must. From fast food counters where most items on the menu are served in a carryout package to the finest five-star eatery where leftovers are carefully packaged, every restaurant goes through lots of containers. Unfortunately, many restaurants use containers that are made of plastic and are unlikely to go on to be recycled.


That doesn’t have to be the case. Earth-friendly take-out food containers are surprisingly affordable and can substantially boost your restaurant’s image. These containers are available made of 100% recycled paperboard and remain highly functional. Grease and leak resistant, microwaveable, and fully recyclable, these containers are a major step toward sustainability.


#2: Offer recycling. Unless you sell soft drinks in cans or are located in a food court type area, many restaurants don’t think of adding recycling bins and recycling their own waste. However, this can be a major lost opportunity both to reduce waste and to impress your customers.


Recycling in restaurants takes place at two levels: recycling bins for customers to use and recycling efforts by the staff themselves. Any eatery that has trash cans out for customers to use can benefit by placing clearly marked recycling bins next to them, which sends a clear message to customers that you care about the environment. But even restaurants that bus all tables and do not vend soda in cans or bottles can benefit from recycling. A single recycling bin under the bar can take empty bottles, substantially reducing the waste you send to landfills.


#3: LED lighting. There was a time when restaurant owners were afraid to turn to LED lighting. After all, early LED bulbs were expensive and had a harsh white-colored light. No one wants to feel like they’re in an operating room while they eat their dinner!


Fortunately times have changed. Not only have prices come down on LED lights, making them competitive with traditional lighting, but they have also warmed up. LED lights are available in a variety of hues including those that closely mimic natural light or incandescent bulbs. Even better, you’ll see your energy bills fall after making the switch!


How has your restaurant gone sustainable?