The Conserve Sustainability Education Program is an online resource designed by the restaurant industry for the restaurant industry. Conserve provides an introduction to sustainability and a roadmap to help operators with easily digestible information to fit in to hectic schedules. It helps restaurants to reduce energy, waste, and water - driving down costs and leaving a lighter footprint on our environment.
The program is designed to reach a broad cross-section of the U.S. restaurant industry and promote transparency and learning. With nearly 1 million restaurant locations across the country, the industry's sheer size means that if operators implement even just a few of Conserve's best practices, collectively we can have an enormously positive environmental impact.
Conserve took shape in 2006, with input from the well-regarded Kimpton Hotel chain, and was made possible by The Turner Foundation because of Conserve's focus on education and sustainability. A task force was convened in 2007, and a pilot program launched in 2008 grew to include 115 participating restaurants. We receive support from industry leaders.
We're constantly evolving and seeking input from the operators who rely on Conserve on a daily basis. Participating operators take a pledge that information they provide is reported to the best of their ability and is part of their commitment to sustainability. For several best practice, operators will be asked to submit additional information (e.g. LEED certification).
"By implementing steps from the Conserve program, we reduced our electrical and gas bill by about 4% - when you're paying $10,000/month, that's quite a sum." - Greg Aardal, The Angus Barn ltd