Why Is It Important For Restaurants To Be Sustainable?
Sustainability isn’t a trend. It’s not a fad. It’s not going away. The concept of sustainability, whether you like it or not, is here to stay, and it’s something that restaurants must be addressing. The food sector produces 0.4 million tons of avoidable food waste per year, so there’s no hiding the industry’s huge impact on the world. But to what extent are restaurants impacting this movement and why is it important for them to become sustainable?
Our interaction with the environment is only sustainable if we’re not negatively impacting it in any way. Did you know that around 8 million metric tons of plastic is thrown into the ocean annually? Shocking right?! Globally, only 9% of plastic ever produced has been recycled, and the restaurant sector is to blame for a bite of that! That’s why it’s important for the industry to take responsibility and put sustainable practices into place to help reduce these figures.
Swapping plastic straws to paper, using compostable or recyclable takeaway containers and reducing food waste are all simple steps food establishments can take to become more sustainable. Supporting our ecosystem is vital and the restaurant sector needs to start prioritising sustainability.
People care about sustainability if they know about it. With the nation becoming more educated about how their actions can have an adverse effect on the planet, they’re consciously making efforts to stop it - which has an impact on your restaurant too! For example, research has shown that consumer brands who demonstrate a commitment to sustainability outperform those that don’t!
Society has taken sustainability under its wing and run with it, which means people are making a vigilant effort to ensure sustainability is considered in day-to-day life. With this in mind, food companies have begun to take action to show consumers they’re doing their bit, with the world’s first ‘plastic-free’ aisle introduced in Amsterdam!
Economic development can sometimes be seen as a controversial factor when it comes to sustainability. Businesses will save money through putting sustainable practices into place, but this shouldn’t be the only reason why they’re doing so.
Nonetheless, becoming sustainable CAN benefit your restaurant financially. Food waste for example is a huge problem that the food sector contributes to, with 3,415,000 tons being disposed of every year. Not only has research shown that restaurants could make a profit of £7 for every £1 they invest in food waste, but around 50% of consumers have said that a restaurant’s efforts to recycle or reduce food waste can be factors in where they choose to dine. We need to be putting money into sustainability in order to get something out of it. Just some food for thought.
Many businesses in the food and drink sector are making the commitment to sustainability, and we’re proud to have a great selection exhibiting at the Restaurant & Takeaway Innovation Expo in November. Grab your FREE tickets today and find them on our all new Sustainability Trail!
Next Read: Sustainable Start-ups - Changing Our World