We're serious about our role as conscientious business owners, constantly looking for ways we can be better stewards of our environment. We recycle or compost most of our waste. We also strive to source food and products from companies with similar commitments.
Doing this isn't always easy. We train every employee at HopCat and the other restaurants in our family to sort waste, including the packaging that food and other materials arrives in and the leftovers on your plate when you finish dining with us.
Instead of just dumping everything in one place, food waste is placed into our compost bin, along with our compostable paper products, used straws and other compostable items. We recycle almost everything we can't compost - cardboard boxes, cans, glass, plastic containers -- you name it.
Why do we do this? Well, take a look behind your average restaurant. There's often a big, overflowing garbage bin - almost everything bound for a landfill or an incinerator. We decided that had to stop. So we talked to our employees, did some research and developed our waste-reduction program. A lot of people said we were crazy, that it would cost too much. Once we understood how much waste we could divert or eliminate, we knew it would cost us too much not to do this.
HopCat's parent company, BarFly Ventures, has a Sustainability Team working diligently to minimize our footprint on the planet. Here's a look at what we've been able to do...
Up to 90% of our waste is diverted from the landfill. In 2017, we diverted more than 25,000 cubic yards
When we compost, we make soil, not trash! Composting diverts food and organic waste from landfills and creates healthy soil that returns nutrients back into our food system.
Recycling diverts precious materials such as metal, paper, and plastic from the landfill. It turns discarded waste into new products. Landfills are a huge waste of resources. They cause air, water, and soil pollution and are a serious human and environmental health hazard. Don’t be trashy!
- We Donated $10,000 to clean water initiatives in 2017.
- We are a founding member of the Great Lakes Business Network.
- We put a strong emphasis on conservation & supporting efforts to Shut Down Line 5 in the Mackinac Straits.
We are a founding member of the US Green Building Council's Grand Rapids 2030 District.
We track all energy data to identify waste and improve efficiency.
In total, we donated $84,000 to 221 nonprofits and local charities in our surrounding communities.
We have formed GROW (green & wellness) teams at each location.
HopCat servers no longer automatically give out straws with water or other beverages unless guests request them. The straws we do use are made of compostable materials.
- BarFly Ventures was honored in 2017 by the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum as Sustainable Business of the Year. In presenting the award, the organization highlighted BarFly's ongoing waste-reduction efforts at each of our restaurants, as well as our partnerships with sustainable nonprofits in each market we enter. Read more about the award here.
For more information on our company's environmental efforts, and to read full reports from 2015 and 2016, visit the sustainability page at BarFly Ventures' website.