By Katy Moses, founder and MD, KAM Media

Well, another dumbfounding week is nearly behind us, and today, I’m going to be avoiding the dreaded ‘C-word’ and instead focusing on something that, up until earlier this year, was fast becoming the issue to watch in hospitality: sustainability.

Katy Moses

Let’s start with a little quiz. Are avocados…?

A) The reason millennials can’t buy their own houses
B) A good reason for the British public to hate Meghan Markle — apparently, according to the Daily Mail, she eats a lot of them and their farming is destroying the planet.
C) A really good alternative to plastic and paper straws

The answer, my hospitality friends, is C. I’ve recently been made aware of Biofase, an eco company who produce straws and cutlery made from avocado seeds and organic compounds — wholly compostable (unlike many of the highly-hyped paper alternatives!) and making use of something that already exists as a by-product of something else. Now that’s sustainable.

But how important is sustainability to hospitality customers, especially in a time where there really is a list of ‘concerns’ as long as my arm when it comes to visiting pubs, bars and restaurants?

As customers adapt to being adaptable, the focus will slowly fall back on the issues that are important to them. And what do hospitality visitors think of this issue? A recent KAM research report told us that 48% of generation Z (ie, the generation who are not only the industry’s future customers, but also the customers who are happiest to visit us in these testing times) would pick a brand according to its impact on the environment. The same report told us that 73% of consumers are very or somewhat concerned about single-use plastics.

Sustainability is no longer a buzz-word, it should be part of every policy, every decision; it’s a promise to our future generations. If you still need convincing, watch the David Attenborough film on Netflix this weekend. Anyone who watches this can only be more certain that we need to look after our planet substantially better, no matter what else is going on. As they say, it’s the only one we’ve got.

To hear more about sustainability in restaurants and pubs, click on the Hospitality Talks session with David Chenery. He’s got examples of those doing it right and tips for how to follow in their footsteps without breaking the bank!

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