Ho.Re.Ca and sustainability: in Italy there are still people who do not like to match these two words or that asserts that “the time has not yet come,” and this is the great challenge we are – successfully – addressing with ECOFFEE. We strongly believe that the Italian consumer is able to perceive and reward the added value of sustainable products and services, and the news that McDonald’s has just opened its first green restaurant in Italy, in Lainate (near Milan) do prove that we are not wrong. This green McDonald’s was designed to be completely self-sufficient in energy: thanks to solar, wind and biomass. The project costed € 5 million, 20% more than a traditional restaurant but at the end of the year it will certainly pay off in terms of increased brand reputation, reduced environmental and social impact, not to add the reduced costs due to the energy saving architecture and technological process.
At the end of 2011, the results coming from the adoption of these policies will be evaluated by an Italian green environmental consulting company ECOFFEE has already established a business connection with a while ago. Meanwhile, McDonald’s aims to achieve the European certification EN 16001, which will help the company to organize systems and processes aimed at improving the economic benefits of energy efficiency and reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.
But let’s talk about the “McGreen” in Lainate – a project whose details are available at the McDonald’s site www.persapernedipiu.info Currently, the restaurant is able to produce up to 90% of the energy needed, but within three months it is said to reach 100%, thanks to a pioneering trigeneration plant that use the exhausted cooking oil as fuel. The building structure is earthquake resistant, and thanks to the “Einstein”system customers are always updated with real-time data regarding energy consumption and savings thanks to a monitor positioned at the entrance of the restaurant. Particular attention was paid to the restaurant supply chain and to the ingredients used in the menu, where customers can also find “local” ingredients belonging to the traditional Italian cuisine, like the Alto Adige IGP Speck, Parmigiano-Reggiano DOP, IGP oranges from Sicily, to name a few. The coffee served will not be the one of the Italian companies Illy or Lavazza, which are known for their sustainable products, but the one certified by the international organization Rainforest Alliance.
On the outside of the building, ecoattivo asphalt – when struck by sunlight it triggers a reduction of pollutants- energy-efficient refrigerators and incentives for the customers using electric cars.
“Lainate is not a departure or arrival point, but a stage of a journey that McDonald’s sets out a while ago. For the Expo 2015 we will be able to implement a reduction of 15% of our CO2 emissions, an increase of 15% of our energy savings and another 15% increase of the energy we use from renewable sources. In 2020, these percentages will rise up to 20% allowing us to meet the Kyoto Protocol parameters”said Roberto Masi, McDonald’s Italy CEO.
In fact, McDonald’s Italy is not new to these kind of sustainable initiatives. As early as 2010, in fact, it adopted new standards for construction and renovation, with the use of building materials with high environmental sustainability, solar panels, heat pumps, roof ventilation and, where it was possible, photovoltaic. But not only that: technologically advanced machinery, power management systems, occupancy sensors, insulation and LED lighting fixtures to reduce air pollutant emissions. All new openings have already been planned to include some or all of these technologies. The 2012 politics has already been planned aiming at using certified renewable energy in all McDonald’s restaurants, building a fleet of delivery vehicles composed by 100% biodiesel and a company’s car pool with low dioxide carbon emissions . (Source: MarketingOggi)