Eating Well

The brainchild of IVY Biofuels and 305Green, The Certified Green Partner Restaurant Program aims to bring much-deserved attention to Miami restaurants going the extra mile to take care of the earth. The new program uses a range of criteria to qualify establishments for participation. Here’s a few, and a note or two on why they matter.

Going Local
Searching out quality local ingredients is high on the current food hot list, but it’s not just beneficial for pleasing trend-conscious foodies. Sourcing food from local farms and purveyors means less fuel is expended in transport, which in turn lowers the overall carbon impact of a meal. What’s more, The CGPR also gives credit for using organic produce in menu items, which helps reduce the use of potentially harmful pesticides and fertilizers.

Waste Not
Few people would think of used cooking oil as a precious resource, but waste oil from restaurants is an ideal source of biodiesel, an eco-friendly alternative fuel. Biodiesel is lower in emissions than conventional diesel or gas, and since it’s locally sourced, gets an added eco-friendly bonus. This particular point is close to IVY Biofuel’s heart, as they are one of the city’s preferred vendors for transforming waste oil into clean, renewable fuel.

Cleaning Up
The final criteria is a simple one: To provide on-site recycling options for restaurant goers or staff. Particularly in fast-paced fine dining environments, this can often fall by the wayside, as the convenience of quickly trashing waste often wins out over more Earth-minded concerns. Through CGPR, IVY Biofuels and 305Green hope to provide even more incentive to clean things up responsibly, reducing landfill waste and preserving important resources.

For restaurants that make the grade, participation in the program brings much more than just a pat on the environmental back. Inclusion in strategic green marketing campaigns and social media, and help gathering documentation for LEED Certification are a few of the many benefits available. Though the program is new, city restaurants are already jumping on board, from Lokal Miami to My Ceviche and Lou’s Beer Garden, among others.

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