Beginner's Guide to Being Sustainable

This week, we are giving you some quick tips to help you keep up with the green hospitality trend. But first, what does sustainability mean? Sustainability is about living within the natural limits of the earth – both today and in the future. But it doesn’t mean sacrificing profit, or quality to do so.  Often defined as the triple bottom line, sustainability means that in addition to considering profit, you would also factor people and the planet into all your decisions. It is about considering profitability, your staff and guests, and natural resources used in every aspect of your restaurant.

Minimizing waste and consumption at your restaurant is good for the environment and your wallet! Here are some quick and easy tips to get you started:

1. Waste: Get as much as possible to go to recycling and compost! That means less styrofoam and more reusable, recyclable or compostable products.

Tip: Did you know disposable coffee cups and black lids can’t be recycled? Switch to compostable cups with white lids to divert waste from landfill and offer a discount to guests with a travel mugs

2. Electricity: Reduce energy consumption by investing in dimmers for you lights, which can save 20% in light savings. Occupancy sensors can result in up to 50% potential lighting savings. Use them in washrooms, or in the office.  Easy peasy!

3. Water: Water security is a major issue, and we can all do our part by reducing our consumption. Installing aerators in taps is a simple and inexpensive way to reduce water consumption. It puts air into the water flow, cutting the amount of water that is released by over a gallon a minute. Costing a few dollars, a single hand sink retrofitted with a 0.5 gpm aerator can reduce annual water and energy costs by up to $100.

How are you considering sustainability at your restaurant?