Sustainability is a hot topic for all prudent restaurants today, and for good reason. With 90% of consumers saying that in general, sustainability matters to them, it’s within your best interest to practise sustainability.
Billy Tannery was founded as a solution to the needless waste of goat hides in the UK, and sustainability influences everything we do. Although not within the hospitality sector directly, our hides are sourced directly from the food industry, and we work closely with restaurants to bring them luxury sustainable leather accessories, such as branded leather aprons and menu covers.
Sustainability can impact all aspects of how a restaurant operates. It’s a win-win scenario: practising sustainability makes you a greener, more responsible business, while improving brand identity and appealing to the 57% of consumers who say restaurant sustainability influences their choices when dining away from home.
Here are three ways restaurants can align with their diner’s values and stand out through sustainability.
Take the farm to table approach
The farm to table approach is a full-scale mission for a healthier planet and population through sustainable food production and the reduction of food waste. But what can this huge movement look like at your restaurant?
Implementing a farm to table approach means opting for local, seasonal produce and cutting out the middlemen by buying direct from the farm. Think about how our great grandparents would have shopped and eaten, no supermarkets, no online food shopping and no imported food from far and wide, just honest local ingredients.
And luckily for any brand conscious eatery, the farm to table strategy can become a key aspect of your brand story and restaurant design. Diners are spoilt for choice in today’s competitive market, therefore separating your restaurant from the crowd should be a priority.
Say no to needless food waste
Food waste is bad for the planet, bad for your wallet and bad for your bins. Britain’s hospitality sector creates a horrifying 920, 000 tonnes of food waste every year, but perhaps even more shocking is that three quarters of this is perfectly edible food.
Silo is a pioneering zero waste eatery based in East London that is paving the way for restaurant food waste reduction. Douglas McMaster, owner of Silo, champions the farm to table approach and the idea of a sustainable circular economy.
Our values at Billy Tannery align with those of McMaster, so much so that he chose our goat leather branded aprons for staff at Silo. Not only are our bespoke aprons made from a sustainably sourced material, they save both energy and water, seeing as they don’t need to go in the washing machine.
Take a leaf out of Silo’s book by composting food scraps and using whole ingredients. Analyse and assess your menu regularly to identify where portion sizes can be altered, and create specials to use up surplus ingredients.
A flexible and responsive menu that changes depending on the ingredients you have at hand is a key way to reduce food waste, and this will certainly help you to stand out from competitors.
Invest in quality sustainable accessories
Sustainability goes hand in hand with quality. Investing in long lasting accessories and décor for your restaurant has the bonus of adding class and style, which in turn will help you to stand out.
Disposable menus and napkins and low cost uniforms may be convenient, but they are bad for the environment and do nothing for your restaurant’s vibe. Instead, opt for hardwearing menus, reusable straws, organic cotton napkins, and quality stylish uniforms for your staff such as branded leather aprons. Sustainable materials such as vegetable tanned goat leather from our microtannery can add a luxe edge to your restaurant’s ambience.
Eco-friendly products for your restaurant can even extend to the cleaning products you use, the soap you choose for the diner’s bathrooms, and how you furnish the space.
Second-hand furniture is a great way to make your restaurant stand out through sustainability. Vintage pieces often add far more character and are very well made compared to flat packed modern tables and chairs. Plus, you can usually stay local when buying second-hand as opposed to ordering online.
Choose sustainability as a cornerstone for your restaurant
Choosing a sustainable approach for your restaurant can profoundly influence every aspect of how you operate.
Sustainability is a fantastic cornerstone for your brand story that will help you be a greener business, serve the freshest ingredients, improve your restaurant’s decor and make you stand apart from competitors.
Datassential, Keynote Reports, Oct. 2022