Footprint Blog

Nando’s set’s an example

Posted in Comment,Equipment,Foodservice Footprint news,International,News,Sustainability by foodservicefootprint on June 27, 2009


In Tony Naylors post on The Guardian’s website ‘Nando’s – Green or Greenwash’, he offers us an insight into Nando’s Junction 27 branch, near Leeds. This particular Nando’s site collects oil from other Nando’s sites and converts this into bio-fuels which drive a micro generator at the site. Amongst other eco-drives, the recycled cooking oil scheme has reduced carbon emissions by 90% compared to the use of mineral fuels. Yet, as Naylor argues, the awe of this project quickly fades on closer inspection. In a year this particular Nando’s site produce 70,000 litres of waste oil. This can be recycled to generate 250,000 KWh of electricity. According to Naylor Nando’s would not comment how long this would power the site for, nor would they elaborate on why the waste oil generator is only providing 50% of the sites electricity.

Although Mr. Naylor says he tries not to be a cynic, he does think that Nando’s efforts could be interpreted as a gimmick when one compares these efforts to ‘genuine’ eco pioneers behind Konstram, the Duke of Cambridge, Acorn House or the Water House.

To us this highlights the misunderstanding towards the hospitality industry. One cannot compare a multiple-estate business such as Nando’s to the top end Acorn House set-up. These are juxtaposed business models that have very different objectives. Tony Naylor focuses on the integrity of sourcing sustainably but little do the public know about the amount of equipment that goes into multiple estate businesses such as Nando’s and the amount of energy used! Therefore, we think it is wrong to label Nando’s efforts as a possible ‘green wash’. Schemes such as this set an example to the industry and should be supported wholeheartedly. Pioneers, such as Arthur Potts Dawson, are motivated by the integrity of the green projects, whereas Nando’s have launched a pilot scheme that will either work or not but in the meantime should not be shot down in flames.

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