How becoming sustainable can increase your business’s success

Sustainable restaurants on the rise

Restaurants and the hospitality sector have faced disruption over the last two years with closures due to COVID-19, employee shortages post-Brexit and growing demand for sustainable restaurants. In facing these challenges and changing customer expectations, restaurants are increasingly focused on adopting greener practices, including generating zero waste and net zero emissions.

Restaurants now need to embrace sustainable strategies such as new ways of managing operations and business practices to tackle wastage. By reducing carbon emissions and adopting sustainable business practices, restaurants and cafes of all sizes can improve operational efficiency and meet changing customer demand.

3 top causes of emissions in restaurants (building only):


Heating or air-conditioning


Catering equiptment



Restaurant average carbon emissions

By analysing trends and data through Zellar Panorama, a

UK restaurant on average emits 28 tonnes of CO2

through their electricity and gas consumption per year.

9 football pitches of trees

would be needed to absorb this amount each year, based on the average annual Woodland Carbon Code sequestration rate (across 100 years). (1)

What is a sustainable restaurant?

A growing number of sustainable restaurants are minimising their impact on the planet by adopting a zero waste and Net Zero emissions approach. They are choosing more sustainable ingredients in their menus, reducing their carbon footprint, buying local produce to shorten their supply chain, generating less food wastage, reducing packaging, water and energy consumption, and recycling more.

Why is sustainability so important to restaurants?

The sustainable restaurant association (SRA) estimated that UK restaurants are throwing away around 18% of all food purchased. It is estimated that food wastage accounts for 8% of all greenhouse gas emissions. This not only reduces profits but is harming the world around us. (2)

Being sustainable is not just about trying to reduce our carbon footprint, it is also about us, the people. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed more pressure on food and beverage businesses to follow best practice regarding safety and hygiene. Anyone working in food or beverage production, preparation, or sale need to be aware of their responsibilities and put them into practice.

A rise in takeaway home deliveries and emissions

Restaurants and takeaways have seen huge demand soaring for online ordering and home deliveries during lockdown. Dining at home is a booming trend, reflected in the growing number of delivery drivers from services like Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat. Takeaway spend grew by 11.4% (3) in 2019, with restaurants benefiting from this boom in food delivery. The biggest climate challenge from the increased demand is the rise in local emissions created through local deliveries, set to raise the emissions across the UK in this sector.

How Zellar helps education

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Customised roadmaps:

There is a programme unique to restaurants, providing benchmarks, insights, behaviours, investments, and local offsets.

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All in one place:

Restaurant owners can access all the key components that make up their sustainability programme in one place.

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One annual payment:

We’re making sustainability accessible and affordable for all restaurants with pricing starting at £125 per annum.

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How does it work:

A simple sign-up process, leads restaurant owners into their custom sustainability programme that can be followed at their own pace.

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Share the story:

Every step of your journey to Net Zero is made available for sharing via your Zellar profile and across your social media platforms of choice.

Find a restaurant

Over 4 in 5

respondents (83%) expect hospitality brands to take part in sustainable practices


said they are willing to pay more for sustainable dining. (4)