The National Restaurant Association is taking its Conserve Initiative further, challenging its members to reduce energy and water usage.
In mid-May, the Washington, D.C.-based organization launched the Conserve/Energy Star Challenge.
To participate, operators can go to http://conserve.restaurant.org, the NRAâs Conserve Initiative Web site, to sign up. The challenge offers operators a chance to keep track of their energy and water use so they can identify opportunities to save money and set goals for the future.
Participants can use the Environmental Protection Agencyâs free Energy Star Portfolio Manager to track their water and energy reduction.
Annika Stensson, the NRAâs director of media relations, said more than 500 restaurants signed up for the challenge by June 1.
The challenge is part of the NRAâs Conserve Initiative, which launched last year. Its Web site offers tips for operators to make their businesses more environmentally sustainable.
âSince the launch, weâve expanded the site with new topics and will be adding more as we go, and weâre getting a lot of positive feedback about the resources and information we provide,â Stensson said.
Stensson said the NRA focuses on business solutions that conserve both the environment and budgets and include options for restaurants of all sizes.
âGoing green is a huge trend right now. Actually, itâs more than a trend. Itâs the future way of doing business,â she said.
âAs weâre embarking on the journey to realize our organizationâs new strategic plan, weâll be building the initiative further.â
This article was featured in The Packer's annual Foodservice section, published June 29. For more stories about the foodservice sector, visit www.thepacker.com/foodservice.