From breaking ground to day to day operations Noodlebox stands alone in thinking “Outside the Box”. (Yes, the pun was intended.) Their motto of course has been Reuse, Recycle and Re-Purpose. During the construction of their location which is across from Walmart on Main Street, they did things like use beetle damaged wood from BC to build their tables. They sourced unwanted materials from local construction sites and re-purposed them into other items such as their chairs. Even the light fixtures are up-cycled cooking woks. If you’re looking for a one of a kind ambiance while enjoying some delicious food then the Noodlebox restaurant has it in spades.
What else have they done that makes them truly unique? They are the first and ONLY business in Alberta that composts 99% of their product. Their To-Go containers, napkins and even sauce containers are all compostable and their composting bins are conveniently built and located right at the front door. The only thing they can’t recycle are their straws. They encourage patrons to use filtered water rather than bottled. The food they use is sourced locally, supporting food growers in our own community and leaving a smaller carbon foot print with reduced transportation requirements. Even the chicken they use in their recipes are free-range which is one of the most eco-friendly not to mention ethical methods of livestock farming.
Why did they bother going the extra “green” mile? For one the staff were excited and felt a greater purpose by being a part of something bigger than themselves. Their commitment to the company and its philosophy was strengthened and resulted in less turn over. Thinking local when sourcing products or materials reduces overall operation costs; and establishes a network of supporting businesses. By being so environmentally conscience, Noodlebox definitely stands out from their competitors; which is an effective and comprehensive marketing campaign. Pros for any business. A little extra time when planning and some specialized education was all it took to engage not only the staff and the customers in treating the environment better but the community as a whole.
While that may be all fine and well for a restaurant, how can other types of companies improve their sustainability methods? No one person or company can save the world but we can certainly all do our part. Consider banding together with other nearby businesses to split the costs of composting or recycling waste materials. Try personalized coffee cups or water bottles for employees rather than disposable. Source local materials or services when possible. Simple steps can make a big difference... all it takes is a little innovation. Create an expectation and others will follow suit.
Thanks for setting such a great example Noodlebox!