Top Restaurant Sustainability Trends That Can Be Easily Implemented
The entire food industry, from top to bottom has sustainability in its sights because being environmentally conscious and sustainable in practices has transitioned from being a moral choice to being a business necessity with an ever-evolving customer base.
Sustainability efforts can range from choosing eco-conscious wholesale aprons to wider considerations for how food is sourced and served, menu construction and many other elements of running a restaurant.
However, sustainability can be simple, and often a few simple switches can make a huge difference and help a great deal.
Here are some of the top trends for sustainability in the restaurant sector that can be easily implemented.
Opt For Different Packaging
If you offer a takeaway service, you will likely use a lot of packaging options, but swapping out polystyrene, laminated cardboard or plastic packs for more sustainable solutions will allow you to make a big change.
Exactly what the best choice is for your restaurant will depend on the services it provides, but typically environmentally-friendly packaging takes one of three forms:
- Reusable – Utensils, plates and boxes made from high-quality, durable materials that last a very long time. Typically best for table service but you can also encourage takeaway consumers to bring their own boxes and drink containers.
- Recyclable – Single-use packaging made from previously used materials that can be taken to a recycling centre and used again, such as cardboard, paper and sometimes aluminium.
- Biodegradable – Single-use packaging that cannot be reused at all, but is typically made from plant waste or materials that disintegrates within a very short period of time compared to plastic.
It is often a tiny change but one that can make a big difference.
Change The Light Bulbs
Typically, the older an electrical component is, the more inefficient it is compared to newer models, which in the long run can cost you more than replacing the initial equipment would have cost.
An easy example of this is with light bulbs, where energy-saving and LED bulbs use significantly less electricity than their halogen or incandescent equivalent.
Something this simple can not only save money but also help the environment by using less energy.
Reduce Your Delivery Carbon Footprint
Food delivery is often a fantastic area to help drive sustainability because there are so many little changes that can help.
Only giving utensils to customers who request them, having drivers deliver several orders at once rather than one at a time, and even investing in electric bikes, scooters or cars can make a big difference.
If you want to take this to the next level, consider investing in route-optimisation software that standardises and improves the structure of your delivery service.
Stop Throwing Food Out
One of the biggest sustainability concerns is waste food, but there are a few easy ways to help with this.
The first is to look at your diner’s plates when they finish their meal; if they leave a lot of it on the side, consider shrinking the plate and lowering the cost.
As well as this, make sure your fridge is well-organised, with expiration dates for perishables clearly labelled and used in the right order (closest to expiry to furthest from).
Finally, if you have an unexpected surplus, consider donating what you do not use to food banks and services that can deliver this food to a home that really needs it.