Every business, including restaurants, generates a negative impact on the environment in its daily activities. This harmful process for our planet is known as the ecological footprint of a restaurant
do you want to know how big is the ecological footprint of your restaurant business? Perfect! Because today we will explain in detail what the ecological footprint in catering is, how to calculate it and what measures you can implement to reduce it.
Stay to the end and learn everything that today’s restaurant businesses are doing to minimise their ecological footprint– our planet will thank you for it!
Table of Contents
what is the ecological footprint of a restaurant?
To begin with, let’s clarify the definition of the ecological footprint of a restaurant. Just as each person has a greater or lesser impact on the environment, depending on their lifestyle, the same is true for restaurant businesses.
The daily activities that a restaurant carries out in its day-to-day management produce greenhouse gases, consume excess energy and generate waste that affects the planet. The measure of this negative impact is what we call the ecological footprint of a restaurant.
As we know, the earth fulfils certain cycles when producing the resources we consume. But with the increasing demand for these resources, the earth has been seriously affected by not being able to complete these cycles.
Hence, the ability of restoration businesses to consume resources, before the planet can complete its cycle to regenerate them, causes a serious imbalance in the environment. This makes the ecological footprint measure in catering very large.
Many restaurant owners, aware of the negative effect of their business on the environment, take measures to minimise the size of the environmental footprint they leave behind.
how can you calculate the ecological footprint of a catering business?
Calculating the ecological footprint of a restaurant is vital as it helps to get a more accurate idea of the impact your business has on the environment.
Fortunately, more and more restaurants, cafés and other businesses in the hospitality industry, aware of the growing problem of environmental pollution, are calculating and committing themselves to minimising the negative effects of their business.
If you are running a catering business, you can also calculate the size of the ecological footprint of your premises. This way, you can start to raise awareness and make changes in order to reduce the levels of environmental impact of the hospitality industry . Here’s how:
The calculation of the ecological footprint is based on the following two factors:
- Supply: This is the natural capacity of the land to generate resources and recover again. It is based on the productivity of agricultural land, livestock, pasture, forest, etc. in the area or region where the restaurant is located
- Demand: This is the portion of land we occupy to produce the resources we consume. In other words, the part of the land from which we obtain the products to satisfy our needs.
The comparative analysis of these two factors is what will determine self-sufficiency or whether there is an ecological deficit in the city where the restaurant is located.
how can the ecological footprint of a restaurant be reduced?
In recent years there has been an increase in the number of people looking for restaurants that meet eco-friendly standards. That is why many hospitality businesses have opted to take certain measures in order to reduce theirenvironmental footprintand become greener and more sustainable.
So that you are not left out of this necessary eco trend in the hospitality sector, we will show you how to reduce the environmental impact of the hospitality industry. So, here are some tips on how to make your business more sustainable and green:
Use seasonal products
Although this may limit the number of fixed dishes on your menu, it is a measure that seriously helps the environment and significantly reduces your environmental footprint. By using only products according to the natural cycle of the seasons, you are respecting and being part of the cycle in which the earth produces these foods.
Use local products and reduce carbon footprint
Carbon is a greenhouse gas and the main cause of global warming. This is why you should use local products, as this measure helps to reduce the amount of CO2 that is released into the environment with food transported from further away.
On the other hand, reducing the amount of CO2 released when transporting food not only helps the environment. By buying local products, you are also helping to strengthen the local economy.
Be careful about the origin of your products
Make sure that most of your raw material suppliers work with certified organic products. This means that the meat comes from farms where the animals are reared with respect for their welfare and the fish is taken from the sea using sustainable techniques
Manage your waste
Use different containers to separate waste such as glass, plastic, paper, etc. to facilitate recycling. You could even use organic waste to make compost, which can be very helpful for the regeneration of the natural resources consumed.
Prefer biodegradable products
When stocking up on single-use products, such as take-out food or beverage containers, napkins, straws, among others, always select biodegradable products. Nowadays, there are countless biodegradable products on the market, such as bamboo, corn, etc.
Energy saving is of great importance in reducing the ecological footprint. In the hospitality industry, a lot of electrical appliances are used and this constant use sometimes leads to energy waste. So unplug machinery that you are not using, if possible buy electronic devices with eco technology. These small actions can make a big change.
Raise awareness among your staff
Undoubtedly, in order to minimise the ecological footprint of your establishment, you need to implement big changes in management. So you will need the collaboration of your entire staff. Train your staff so that they understand why and the benefits of the changes for the environment. This way the actions will be sustained over time.
Water is the most important resource we have, both in life and in the hospitality industry, so be sure to take care of it. In hospitality businesses, water is the most used resource, so we must be very careful how we handle it.
Maintain taps in bathrooms and kitchens to avoid leaks. Install minimum waste systems in toilets, dishwashers, coffee machines and others to avoid waste.
Sometimes, when buying products in large quantities, many of them are damaged, generating losses and a greater amount of waste. That is why, in the case of catering businesses, the best thing to do is to carefully inventory and label the products we have in stock to avoid wasting food.
Finally, you are aware of what the ecological footprint of your restaurant depends on . So, if you want to join the change and make your business sustainable and contribute to the care of the environment, you should start reducing your restaurant ecological footprint.
You need to do it and you know how to do it. Take action!