April 21, 2009
Restaurants can plug in to a new power source -- grease. The Vegawatt system (www.vegawatt.com) from Boylston, Mass.-based Owl Power Company filters a restaurant's used vegetable oil and then combusts the refined fuel in a diesel engine to pump electricity and hot water into the operation's system.
The Vegawatt unit can provide 10 percent or more of the electricity that a business needs, reports Wired magazine. Operators can lease a Vegawatt for approximately $435 per month or buy the system.
Owl Power Company notes that businesses that use Vegawatt also reap government incentives and rebates. Bought outright, the current price for the unit is about $22,500 after applying an investment tax credit provided in Congress's recently passed economic stimulus bill, says Ben Prentice, Vegawatt's vice president of sales.
In addition, operators wouldn't have to worry about disposing of used oil. Operators can learn more about the Vegawatt at the NRA Show, May 16 to May 19 in Chicago. Stop by Booth #1759 at McCormick Place.
The money you save on operating costs (through energy efficiency) adds to what you get to keep, so saving 20% on energy operating costs can increase your profit as much as 33%.
Find out green trends and more in the 2011 Restaurant Industry Forecast. Learn more