When it comes to sustainability, green can actually be a little gray, as people have different definitions of what it means to be sustainable. It’s important for organizations to understand the overall environmental footprint of their operations, as customers are increasingly demanding businesses like restaurants be more conscious of their impact on the planet.
In response, major restaurant chains are setting bold sustainability goals, including a plan by McDonald’s to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by one-third over the course of the next decade. Chipotle is also seeking a more sustainable future, with a goal of diverting 50% of its waste away from landfills by 2020.
While solutions like limiting food waste and installing energy efficient appliances are important for enticing sustainability-focused spenders, looking beyond these solutions is key. One area that’s often overlooked is cleaning operations. Incorporating solutions that conserve water, reduce energy use and limit single-use plastics are just several methods to consider.
Savings for the Bottom Line and the Planet
Restaurant owners and managers should consider the following sustainability solutions to improve back-of-house operations:
- Remote dishwasher management: connecting the kitchen to the cloud
Diversey’s IntelliDish™, a remote performance management system for commercial dishwashers, sends data from a kitchen’s machines to an interactive dashboard and emails alerts directly to the operator. Part of Diversey’s Internet of Clean™ platform, IntelliDish saves businesses time and money by reducing the need to rewash dishes and providing actionable, real-time insights and maintenance advice to help fix problems quickly.
It also supports sustainability by increasing the efficiency of water, energy and chemical usage. This enhanced efficiency leads directly to lower carbon emissions. Water is a finite resource which is only renewable if handled well. Equipping a kitchen with an IoT solution for dishwashing is one smart way to save water and reduce a restaurant’s total water footprint.
- Super concentrates: cutting waste while conserving water
By using super concentrated cleaning chemicals, restaurants reduce waste and save water in one fell swoop. Super concentrates require water to be added only at the point of use, and they produce a ripple effect of increased sustainability:
- Less product is required per cleaning task than bulk and ready-to-use alternatives.
- More chemicals and less water are carried on transport vehicles, reducing the total road miles and carbon footprint of deliveries.
- Less single-use plastic packaging is required, therefore fewer raw materials are consumed and less waste generated.
- Super concentrates can be paired with dilution and dosing control equipment to eliminate guesswork on chemical-to-water ratios, limiting wasted water.
- Closed-loop dispensing systems: streamlining sustainability
Super concentrates have a maximum impact on sustainability when their dilution is centrally controlled. Closed-loop dispensing systems, including the J-Fill system from Diversey – the most innovative and versatile chemical dispensing platform in the industry today – use technology to control chemical ratios.
The J-Fill platform removes the guesswork when preparing solutions to deliver consistency, eradicate waste and reduce costs. Its SpillTite™ cartridges significantly reduce the risk of chemical spillage and exposure. Further, solutions prepared consistently to the manufacturer’s specification reduce the need for expensive and time-consuming re-cleaning, ultimately helping to save water.
Combining the use of these three tools lays a foundation for restaurants to reduce their environmental footprint while also keeping costs in line. By promoting a sustainable back-of-house operation, restaurants can attract the growing number of customers who are choosing where to eat with the Earth in mind.