There are simple ways where your food service can set off a train of environmental conservation initiatives in your restaurant’s dining room. The simplest way to start off with is use reusable or recyclable kitchen utensils and cutlery. Next using plastic, flatware or dinnerware is a no-no. If any item is a one-time use, go for ones that can be composted or recycled. It goes without saying that plastics are non-decomposable in a dumpsite. Check for eco-friendly one-time use items that are also environmentally biodegradable. In India, more number of plastic straws is used than anywhere else in the world; only few ends up into the mechanical recycling sorter, as the ocean plastic pollution crisis poses serious threat to marine creatures the world over. You need not give out every single customer of yours a straw; let them request for one, and you will be pleasantly surprised by the number of requests you’ve had. Why not make this your new policy? Paper napkins, though a one-time use item, can be done away with, particularly in casual-dining restaurants. On the other hand, cloth napkins are washable and re-usable for several years. If you think Incandescent lights are energy efficient, you have another guess coming. An incandescent bulb generally has a tungsten filament surrounded by a glass enclosure. The passing of electric current through the filament heats it to a particular temperature which then helps radiate light. Now how does it fare in terms of energy efficiency? Not more than 5 percent of the energy utilized is transformed into visible light. LED lights, in contrast, are a much improved, sustainable solution. They don’t operate on heat; instead they utilize semiconductor diodes through which electrical current passes to create the same amount of light (lumens) as incandescent lights whilst only using energy between 10 and 20 percent. Getting too technical? Agreed. Finally, the upshot: they consume less energy, reduce utility costs and are comparatively more sustainable. You can also cash in on the fact that they need fewer replacements in the long run. Here’s another simple, yet pro idea: print your menus only on recycled paper. By this you are literally doing your bit for the planet, yet effectively making use of what you might otherwise throw away.
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