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A twist on water service: Offer before pouring

A simple question like, “Would you like a glass of water?” can go a long way toward reducing water use at your restaurant. Consider offering water on request rather than automatically serving it to every guest.

In addition to saving water and costs, secondary benefits can include:

  • Fewer glasses to wash and sanitize
  • Less ice to make
  • Improved service efficiency

If one in four restaurant guests in the United States declined a glass of tap water, the foodservice industry as a whole would save more than 25 million gallons of water annually, estimates the American Water Works Association.

To put that in perspective: If restaurateurs put all the water they saved into one-gallon milk jugs, and placed one jug next to the other without any gaps, the milk-jug line would almost span the distance from Washington, DC to Los Angeles.

That’s A LOT of water!

Video: Offer water to guests

More Resources

  • Walking the Talk: Reports from the field: Restaurateurs and suppliers talk sustainability.
  • Ask the Expert: We connect you with industry experts for answers to your questions.
  • Watch: Conversations with sustainability innovators.