Orlando, Fla. -- Darden Restaurants reduced restaurant water usage by 17% on an aggregate basis between fiscal years 2008 and 2011, exceeding its 2015 goal of reducing water consumption in each of its restaurants by 15% on aggregate and is more than half way toward meeting the same goal for reducing energy consumption in its restaurants, according to the company’s second annual sustainability report.
"Water scarcity, declining fish stocks, health and wellness and developing future talent – these are just some of the issues shaping our operating environment, our communities and our business," said Clarence Otis, chairman and CEO of Darden. "We recognize we have the responsibility to make a positive difference around a host of sustainability issues to drive the growth of our company while also creating social value."
The report also highlighted other environmental accomplishments, including:
- The completion of new green building prototypes for Red Lobster, Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse, enabling all new restaurants to align with LEED certification standards;
- Tripling the number of Darden restaurants that take part in single-stream recycling of glass, plastics and aluminum;
- Increasing Darden's landfill diversion rate by 14%; and
- Receiving the Environmental Protection Agency's Energy Star certification at its Restaurant Support Center facility in Orlando, which is now generating 20% or more of its power from the 1.1-megawatt solar installation completed in December.