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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Big Facts in a Little Book - 2012 Update

Each year the National Restaurant Association produces a pocket factbook that details the important role restaurants play in our lives and the economy.  Along with the standard facts, 970,000 restaurant locations produce $632 billion in sales, the 2012 book includes interesting anecdotes on technology advances and industry trends impact.  The IMPACT Blog post, BIG Facts in a Little Book, gives an overview of the 2011 pocket factbook.

If quickservice restaurants offered self-service ordering terminals, 41% of adults would likely use the system. Twitter, Facebook and other social  media have strong influence over decisions to dine at a new restaurant - 28% of adults use cyberspace recommendations for first-time restaurant visits.  With an increased focus on nutrition, 36% of adults have used the internet to search for nutritional information about restaurant food.

The above facts show technology plays a strong role in the industry's customer interactions.  In many instances, utilizing technology reduces paper and other waste generated along with increasing operational efficiency.   Electronic customer communication methods are often more effective, less expensive AND prevent paper use | waste generation.

Chef Ahmad of Affairs to Remember
at his herb garden in front of their
According to the factbook, 72% of adults are more likely to visit a restaurant that offers locally-produced food items.  Consumer and industry demand for local and regional products is instrumental in revitalizing the small farm system. Urban agriculture programs are included in most city sustainability plans and chefs are planting herb and vegetable gardens in the nooks and crannies available at their restaurant or facility.

Employing 12.9 million individuals in the U.S., the restaurant industry is vital to our economy and provides an educational platform to reach a significant portion of the population.  Through their ConSERVE, Solutions for Sustainability, program, the NRA is committed to educating the nation's second largest private sector industry on the significant role sustainability and social responsibility play in successful operations.  

Elemental Impact and the Zero Waste Zones are honored to work in partnership with the NRA.  

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