If you like to eat out but worry that it might lower your footprint, you have to take a look at a great eco-site, the Green Restaurant Association.
What’s the Green Restaurant Association (GRA) all about?
GRA is a national non-profit organization who provides “Services in research, consulting, education, marketing and community organizing.” Restaurants represent about 10% of the U.S. economy, and the GRA’s goal is to help make them as sustainable as possible.
The GRA serves both restaurants who’d like to become green or greener, and consumers looking for a green place to dine.
Services for consumers include…
- You can search a list of Certified Green Restaurants. You can search by category, i.e. coffee shop, cafes, caterers, and more, search by location, or search by keyword. You can also simply browse the listings.
- You can learn more by reading Dining Green: A Guide to Creating Environmentally Sustainable Restaurants and Kitchens or see a page that nicely explains eco-guidelines for restaurants.
- Suggestion cards are available to print out and leave at your fave restaurants. The cards are a no-fuss way to encourage your favorite restaurants to become more sustainable. You can also print a thank you card for green eateries you already love.
- You can take a quiz to assess the eco-perks (or not) of your favorite restaurants.
What makes a green restaurant?
In order to achieve Certified Green status, a restaurant needs to meet the following goals…
- A comprehensive recycling system must be followed (depending on area product recycling laws).
- The restaurant must be free of all Styrofoam products.
- Each green restaurant needs to commit to completing four eco-steps annually.
Of course being a green restaurant is an in-depth process. The eco-steps cover these issues better than the general goals, if you’d like to read them.
So if you’re curious about all the green restaurants out there, or need some ideas for dinner tonight, check out the Green Restaurant Association.
[image via stock.xchng]