LOS ANGELES (CBS News) — Restaurants across the country are taking part in the Zero Foodprint initiative.
A Los Angeles restaurant that prides itself on serving up delicious Southern cuisine is also showing its commitment to the environment.
Sammy Monsour, chef and co-owner of “Preux & Proper,” says “The most guiding light of my career has been sustainability.”
“Preux & Proper” is just one of a growing list of restaurants around the world that have joined the Zero Foodprint initiative.
“It gives you an honest glance in the mirror as to what your carbon footprint is,” Monsour says, “and then what you can do to neutralize it.”
The initiative helps restaurants reduce their carbon footprint by looking at how the food is prepared and how the business is run.
The chef conducted a carbon footprint assessment of his restaurant.
“It’s the equivalent of 84 passenger vehicles on the road a year,” Chef Monsour says.
He let that number guide nearly all aspects of the 6,000-square-foot, two-floor restaurant: from looking at the number of daily deliveries to choosing vendors who are committed to renewable farming.
“What we want to do is not just get a great product, but we want to get a product that’s making a difference,” he says.
The restaurant is even mindful of the way it stirs cocktails at its “zero landfill” bar. The straws at the bar are made from dill plant stems. But it’s not just food and drinks. This restaurant is thinking about the way it does everything, even how it disposes of waste.
Zero Foodprint restaurants also participate in carbon offsetting, something customers appreciate.
“I think we’re all, in this day and age, moving forward with what’s best for the environment, what’s best for your body, what’s best for your health,” says costumer Unique Zayas.
Chef Monsour agrees.
“Anywhere you dine or shop, if they’re into the Good Food Movement, the food is always gonna taste better,” he says.
Chef Monsour says restaurants rethinking sustainability benefits everyone in the long run. Nearly 100 restaurants across the world are participating in the Zero Foodprint initiative. Chef Monsour won’t know exactly how much the restaurant decreases its carbon footprint until the Zero Foodprint changes go into full effect.