If you serve it, they will come. That's the conclusion drawn from a recent survey asking restaurant-goers if they would be willing to pay a premium for their meal if they knew the restaurant sourced sustainable food and recycled its food waste.
The poll of 1,000 people by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) found more than half would be prepared to pay more for their meal if they knew the restaurant was committed to reducing its environmental impact and taking social responsibility seriously. And 43 per cent of respondents would be prepared to pay up to 10 per cent more for a meal in a sustainable restaurant. Admittedly, 1,000 people is not a huge sample size, but we'd be willing to lay a wager that the answers would stay consistent in a bigger poll.
When asked what they considered to be the top three sustainability priorities for restaurants, 53 per cent identified the problem of food waste. Yet only six per cent of those asked said restaurants communicated what they were doing about it.
Customers also expect more expensive restaurants to have better sustainability performance, and feel that restaurants don't do enough to inform them about what they're doing to improve it.
Mark Linehan, managing director of the SRA, said the onus is on restaurants to fulfill increasing consumer desire to know more about their sustainability activities. "The restaurants that respond to the wide-ranging demands of increasingly savvy diners and communicate what they are doing effectively, are the ones that will prosper," he said in a statement.
(via Business Green)