The Rising Popularity of Being Eco-Friendly (and Why You Should Care)

With the popularization of social media and the readily available stream of information within the last twenty years, being eco-friendly has gone from a radical movement to a commonly held stance. The rise of environmentalism has made way for many major cities and counties to ban plastic straws and other single-use plastics. This legislature was met with excitement from the environmental community. Why is it that being eco-friendly has become so popular? Keep reading to find out.

It all started in the '70s

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1970 was a big year for the environment. The first Earth Day was organized as a protest against environmental ignorance. A few months later, the EPA was formed to provide a layer of legislative protections for the environment. After that, several congress members known for actively working against environmental protections lost their seats. This was the first major year of environmental wins in the US.

Growing Popularity

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After 1970, being eco-friendly started to gain more clout. After the amendments made to the Clean Air Act and the incentives given to businesses for reducing pollution, the 1989 Gallup poll found that 76% of Americans call themselves environmentalists. This was just the beginning.

A New Wave

In 2020, everyone is on the internet. 79% of the population of the US is on social media (according to Statista). We constantly have unlimited information at our fingertips. We're no longer at the whim of what major news outlets want to tell us. This has given way to a new wave of environmentalism.

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You may have seen the videos on Tik Tok of young people buying reusable straws to "save the turtles." This new wave of environmentalism was founded on the idea that single-use plastic is the enemy of the environment. This is what pushed the legislature to disallow plastic straws in some places.

Why You Should Care

As a restaurant business, you may be wondering why being eco-friendly is worth it. It could mean replacing some of your current products with ones you aren't familiar with. You already have a supplier you like and you don't want to change your routine. Here's why it's a good thing for your business:

It's a Selling Point

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If your business is eco-friendly, you can tell your customers. It'll give you a compassionate view in their eyes. You'll gain customer loyalty and promote new business. Being eco-friendly is a great way to make your business more human.

You'll Save Money

Being eco-friendly isn't just using better materials, though that is a big part of it. It's also about lessening food waste and using more efficient electricity. By doing both of these things, you'll save a significant amount of money. Alongside that, there are some tax breaks and incentives for green businesses. Talk to your accountant about how to get those.

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If you want to learn about how you can be more eco-friendly, here's an article about avoiding food waste and one about being more eco-friendly as a business.

Being eco-friendly has been rising in popularity for the last fifty years. By being an eco-friendly business, you can both save money and bring in new business. It's a great way for you to help the earth and your restaurant.

(Sources: PBS, Business News Daily)