Becoming more sustainable has more positive aspects that you can imagine - from saving resources to gaining from financial improvements. The world and your economic status win!
1. Make a note of the resources you use
To become more sustainable, there is a system that you can implement in order to identify where you are wasting resources. You have to point out the activities that your restaurant/team is doing, then write down each activity and the resources it needs to get done. It is a system that takes around 2-3 hours depending on how fast and focused you are.
For example, if you have a small business with the USP being “takeaway burgers”, one of the most significant activities you do is selling burgers. The resources you need for that activity are bread, potatoes, eggs, salad, tomatoes, oil, meat, and packaging material.
2. Know your most-used resources
So you start by making a list, stating these most used resources as mentioned above. What you are getting is a clear view of the impact your restaurant is creating in the demand of the market, which becomes harmful if you direct this demand to the wrong suppliers. And that brings us to the next step.
3. Choose a sustainable supplier
You can start by changing the big supplier chains for local ones. Try to make partnerships and contracts with the producers that use natural, organic and renewable raw material with low environmental impact.In our example, we would be searching for local bakery's and be sourcing vegetables, eggs, and meat from local farmers. And in the case of the takeaway material, we would buy from suppliers that offer recyclable materials and replace the plastics in use for degradable materials like carton.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out 6 Steps To Increase Your Restaurant Sustainability
4. Know the energy your business is consuming
As a manager, every month you see the significant amounts of energy your restaurant is consuming. First, when you buy new machines, try to buy machines with energy saving programs. They are not really much more expensive, and they save way more energy - and money (what you see at the end of the month on the bill).
Secondly, there are a lot of energy suppliers nowadays that are in the low-environmental-impact branch. Most of their services are more or less in the same price range than the conventional ones. So go out there and do some research into the market offers, and pick the one company that best fits your budget. This will not cost you much more, but may attract new consumers!
Although doing this research, changing processes, machines, suppliers and “habits” is not complex at all, it is not easy in the very beginning. But believe me - after the second month, you will see how much it is worth.