Arbor wins SRA’s top environmentally-friendly eaterie award

We’re walking on air here at The Green House, Bournemouth’s environmentally-friendly luxury boutique hotel.  Yesterday was a great day for us: Arbor, our two AA-rosette restaurant, was recognised as the most environmentally-friendly eaterie in the UK at the 2015 Sustainable Restaurant Association awards.

Now in their fourth year, the awards honour establishments that have made “extraordinary accomplishments” in sustainability.

This is a really big deal for us. We’ve been members of the SRA since 2011 and an SRA ‘champion’ (with the maximum three-star rating) every year since then, thanks to our local and seasonal sourcing of ingredients, and our staff and community engagement.

But this is the first time we have been shortlisted for – and won – one of the SRA’s coveted awards. We beat stiff competition from Bistrot Bruno Loubet at The Zetter Hotel in London and seafood restaurant The Captain’s Galley in Caithness, Scotland to win in the ‘Environment’ category, which recognises restaurants’ eco-friendly practices such as water-saving, waste management and energy efficiency.

Arbor was shortlisted for the award after achieving 99% in the ‘Environment’ category during our 2014 SRA assessment – up from 75% in 2013 – thanks to our development of sustainable practices, such as undertaking a carbon footprint calculation and setting reduction targets for water use, energy use, and waste reduction.

We’ve gone to great lengths since we opened in 2010 to make Arbor’s kitchens as eco-friendly as possible. For example:

  • We use induction burners which are super-efficient as they convert about 85% of their energy into heat, compared to about 40% for gas. Also they turn off automatically when a pan is removed so there is no wastage. Similarly, our grill only comes on when there is something under it, again avoiding any waste heat.
  • Our fridges and freezers use hydrocarbon which is very efficient and contains no nasty gases – they are the best energy rated models available.
  • Our dish and glass washers are hot-fill, using water that has been heated more efficiently by our solar panels and CHP system than cold fill would be.
  • We have an on-site water filtration system with in house (re-usable) bottling to avoid transportation of bottled water
  • We have a zero-waste-to-landfill policy
  • Even the flooring in the kitchen has 25% recycled content!

However, it’s not our way to sit back and feel satisfied with our accomplishments – we are always pushing to do more, something the SRA acknowledged in its report.  We saw a big increase in our overall SRA score, achieving 90% in 2015, up from 83%. This was “an exceptional achievement” which put us in the top 3% of its members.

We were in excellent company at this year’s awards, with Daylesford Organic’s café, the Pig Hotel in Hampshire, and Ceviche in Soho also named as winners.  All of these great restaurants really care, like we do, about how we source ingredients and products, how we treat our clients, staff, suppliers and local communities, and how we meet our environmental responsibilities.

To be recognised for our efforts by the SRA just strengthens our commitment to continuously improve our performance on sustainability, to share this with our customers and, ultimately, to improve their experience of eating with us here at Arbor.

To book a table at Arbor, the most environmentally friendly restaurant in Bournemouth (heck, in the UK!)  call  01202 498900 or email enquiries@arbor-restaurant.com.

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