Let's Go Green by removing plastic & paper in your F&B Businesses

by LiLi | Aug 30 2018
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From plastic straws to paper menus, paper receipts; restaurants and coffee shops produce quite a bit of trash - the industry average is an incredible 100,000 pounds per year. Applying innovation to reduce paper, plastic, and polystyrene use can reduce landfill waste, change our air quality, and improve public health, without a significant impact on your wallet. It's time your F&B businesses should make changes to protect the future environment for the future better world.
Let's Go Green by removing plastic & paper in your F&B Businesses

#1. Use new Green Materials for Straws

One way to reduce plastic waste is to cut back on your stay-use. Plastics sit right beside polystyrene as a landfill hogging takeout option. Plastics also never break down, deliver carcinogenic chemicals, and expend non-renewable energy sources. Restaurants that offer straws rather than automatically handing them out see up to 50% - 80% of customers opt-out. Some restaurants have even eliminated straws entirely. 

Another alternative, glass or metal straws, are becoming replaced solutions for restaurants and coffee shops. The only disadvantage of these materials is about the cost per straw unit, it usually highly expensive starting from 2 - 3 USD. So there are two efficient ways to use them in your coffee shops or restaurants: place as the permanent tools as forks, spoons; or make creative promotion programs to inspire customers to bring their straw when visiting your places through raising the awareness of the environment sustainable.

Moreover, let's think about green materials from natural vegetables to make straws such as Water Spinach, Lepironia Articulata or Bamboo. Just think out of a box, you can find the new creative way to reduce plastic and make your restaurant tools more green and friendly. Also, of course, your restaurant will be unique to customers.

Innovate ideas to remove paper & plastic in your F&B stores Green Straws

#2. Goodbye to Styrofarm & Plastic Box Trash

Trade your plastic & styrofoam takeaway cups & boxes for an environmentally friendly alternative, like biodegradable materials produced from starch or recycled paper products.

Technically, the name of the first disastrous material is polystyrene (styrofoam is a popular brand name), and it affects environmental issues from start to finish. The material is made from petroleum, a  non-renewable fossil fuel that never breaks down. In 1986, the EPA ranked polystyrene the fifth biggest hazardous waste creator. Toxins in the material, which can leak into our food and the environment, have been linked with reproductive and other health problems. In the restaurant industry, polystyrene isn't recycled because it's incredibly costly to remove food residue, and instead accounts for even more landfill waste than paper. In Taiwan, Portland, and Orange County its use has been completely forbidden.

So for sit-down services, it's essential for using permanent materials in all of the service cases. However, for takeaway orders, it's still a very challenging business case you should address. First of all, you should replace all plastic cups with paper cups meanwhile finding the technical ways to upgrade the paper cup with more environment-friendly paper but still keep the hot or cool level. The second ways will be more sustainable and long-term plan; it's about increasing the awareness of customers for supporting the environment. In more details, your F&B brand should play the ambassador to call-for-action from customers through promotions or activation campaigns such as "free upsize when taking your bottle," "double reward scores when using your takeaway lunch box" or "online contests to get new ideas for daily recycled materials."

Innovate ideas to remove paper & plastic in your F&B stores Reusable Cup & Box

#3. Reach for recycled paper Menu

A simple green change is to transform your menus (if they're printed) to a recycled paper. Recycled paper has three unique advantages over its virgin bleached rival. First, recycled paper reduces landfill waste, making fewer piles of trash in our communities. It also reduces deforestation, since rarer woods are cut down for pulp, which enhances our air quality and wildlife environments. The third difference is in its processing. Bleaching paper with chlorine produces hazardous pollutants that have been associated with health defects. The recycled production also uses less water and produces less waste than regular paper.

Moreover, with a stunning design, recycled paper can make your menu - as one of the decor things for your coffee shops, restaurants more vintage, and unique. Also, finally, to quickly update the menu when having changed, you should select the flexible design to insert new pages or adjust when needed.

Innovate ideas to remove paper & plastic in your F&B stores Recycled Paper Menu

#4. Go Paperless

Paper receipts are both a nuisance and an environmental hazard. Every year, paper receipts consume 9.6 million trees, 115 million gallons of gas, and one billion gallons of water, in the US alone. They also produce over a billion pounds of trash that clog our landfills and emit CO2 emissions that damage the ozone. From Paper Calculator, we can see how big your restaurant impacts the environment. If every your restaurant or coffee shop has 100 transactions per day and print one copy per transaction; 60 pounds is the paperweight, your store consumes every month; 720 pounds is the paperweight, your store consumes every year.

posonline paperless 2

If you do not print the paper receipts anymore, you can save near eight trees every year combined with saving paper from other business activities, this number of trees can be up to 10. Besides that, the fact is more than half of customers leave the receipts on restaurant tables when they go out of your restaurant. Thus, the roles of customer bills are just for the business purpose: claiming back or rechecking before processing the payment. So don't you see the paper receipt printing is a meaningless activity?

Here are some go paperless innovations, you can consider to apply for your business:

  • eBill - also named digital receipts is the solution for "no printed bill". It allows companies to reduce costs over time and increase efficiency at the cashier. With this solution, the eBill will be sent directly to the customers' phone, email, or message so they can easily save or access when needed. Moreover, the eBill also support the more quickly & smoothly sale process by removing the dependence to the printer hardware.

Innovate ideas to remove paper & plastic in your F&B stores eBill

  • Online documents. In the nowadays digital world, the people aim objective of 1 smartphone per 1 person. Moreover, peoples are spending their most of the time to use the internet for most of their activities: study, work, and entertainment. So as the business owners of your restaurants or coffee shops, do you still want to read reports or operational documents on papers? "Don't print any paper documents unless it completely needed" - you should get viral this key message as the business mission for all staffs and coordinators of your F&B businesses.

In conclusion, as the F&B brand owner, everything you share always has the impact on your audiences and customers; as the business owner, everything you do still have the consequence to our environment. It's time you should stop doing activities causing disastrous to the environment; start raising the awareness of saving the environment for your customers and audiences, and do differently to identify no plastic & paper solutions by thinking out of the box.