Going green is more than just a trend – for a growing number of consumers, it’s a way of life.
Green is definitely the way forward, and by making your catering business more environmentally friendly, you can appeal to a passionate and loyal customer base while reducing your expenses and helping to reduce your business’s negative environmental impacts.
Here are our top tips to get your catering services green.
1. Use sustainable/reusable/biodegradable materials
Disposable serving ware and tableware are seriously detrimental to the environment. We all know how bad plastic straws are by now, but there are so many other items you can switch out for more environmentally friendly options.
Cut out the foam and single use paper, not only do they look cheap and terrible, they cause serious damage to the environment. Try and get your disposables made with PET plastic, which is biodegradable and recycled easily. Or if you want to look trendy, opt for bamboo utensils and bowls. Bamboo is an abundant plant species and bamboo products are biodegradable.
Switch to reusable tableware options. If you cater for upscale events, cloth tablecloths and napkins are perfect for use at weddings, banquets, formal lunches and dinner events. This is the most sustainable option if you have the space to wash and dry your linen.
2. Have a beverage station
Forget handing out plastic cups and bottles of water, consider setting up a drinks station instead. Invest in a few reusable drink dispensers and see your disposable plastic use fall dramatically. Instead of relying on bottled water and cola, you can create your own, more memorable drinks menu. For example, you can infuse beverages like tea or lemonade with fresh fruits and herbs – delicious, healthier and eco-friendly!
3. Serve eco-friendly menu choices
A key part of reducing your carbon emissions is by making your food eco-friendlier.
The first way to do this is to simply offer more vegetarian and vegan dishes. It’s a well-known fact that crop farming releases less greenhouse gases and is far more sustainable than farming animals. Producing meat involves using more land and water than growing vegetables. Try offering more plant-based dishes on your menu.
The next thing to consider implementing is a seasonal menu. Seasonal produce is fresher and tastier than food that has travelled thousands of miles before being served. Another benefit to using seasonal produce is the shorter distance your ingredients must travel: your food is creating less gas emissions and logging less food miles in not-very-eco-friendly vehicles.
4. Use energy efficient equipment
The equipment you prepare and deliver food with can have a massive impact on your catering company’s sustainability efforts and carbon emissions.
For those of you that regularly use chafing dishes and chafing fuels, consider switching to the green option – EcoBurner.
The EcoBurner system is a safer, cleaner and greener alternative to existing gel & wick chafing fuel products on the market today. The engineering excellence that has created the product provides better quality food and the refillable burner uses 75% less carbon.
For the rest of your kitchen appliances, consider using Energy Star certified equipment. Only the most energy efficient appliances pass the Energy Star certification process, meaning you have lower running costs and a lower carbon footprint.
There are so many ways you can make your catering business eco-friendlier. Don’t forget to actively promote the ways you’re contributing to a greener planet – like-minded customers will appreciate your efforts and be more likely to choose your business over one that isn’t as environmentally friendly.