Darden announces system-wide sustainability goals

Orlando, Fla. Darden Restaurants announced it has committed to reducing energy and water usage by 15% by the year 2015 in each of its 1,800 restaurants across North America.

The company also announced that it has joined the Sustainability Consortium, an independent organization of diverse global participants working collaboratively to build a scientific foundation that drives innovation to improve consumer product sustainability.

"Darden is committed to sustainability," said Ian Olson, director of sustainability for Darden. "Our business relies on a number of natural resources, and these goals are designed to help us be the best stewards of those resources that we can be. At the same time, our membership in the Sustainability Consortium will allow us to build on our efforts by combining our knowledge and insights with organizations in other fields, effectively multiplying our impact."

Darden has set goals to reduce per-restaurant energy and water use by 15% by 2015 and, long term, to send zero waste to landfills. To date, the company has implemented water-saving measures estimated to cut usage by 700,000 gallons per year in each of its restaurants; installed energy-efficient lighting in all kitchens; and implemented fixed "Power Up" schedules to help reduce energy consumption.

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