The hospitality industry is becoming greener with 13 per cent more businesses adopting green initiatives such as recycling and sourcing products locally in the past two years.
Of the 600 catering businesses, including restaurants, hotels and pubs, surveyed for refrigeration supplier Gram's 2010 Green Paper, 89 per cent are now practicing green initiatives, compared to 76 per cent in 2008.
And it seems that the recession has been a catalyst for many businesses to improve their environmental record with 27 per cent saying they had become greener while only 5 per cent said they'd put plans on hold because of the economic downturn.
Gram managing director Glen Roberts said: "Overall the paper reveals there has been an improved take-up of green initiatives within foodservice with a higher number of respondents than in 2008 demonstrating heightened awareness of their responsibilities, the commercial benefits that being green has on their business and ways to become greener still."
Recycling remains the most popular way to be green with 60 per cent of businesses claiming they found it the easiest while local sourcing was the next popular at 10 per cent.
Consolidating deliveries and using low energy consumption equipment were also relatively popular options at 9 per cent.
All 'green actions' improved on 2008's figures, except for buying new low energy equipment like fridges and freezers.
Roberts said many business owners were failing to update equipment because they could not afford it and were unaware of loans they can get from the government to help buy energy-saving appliances. Similarly, 73 per cent of respondents were unaware of the Carbon Trust's Energy Technology List which details energy saving equipment eligible for tax relief.
"The report highlights just how imperative it is that the government begins to invest in educating the industry, not only in the benefits of the ECA scheme, but also on the necessity of proactively intiating green initiatives," said Roberts.