Ocean Friendly Restaurants (OFR’s)
Plastic pollution is suffocating our ocean and the many animals that call it home. Researchers estimate there are now over 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic in our ocean impacting marine ecosystems and wildlife such as seabirds, dolphins, fish, and turtles. The Surfrider Foundation’s Ocean Friendly Restaurants program seeks to stop plastic pollution at its source. One restaurant, one customer at a time, the program increases awareness, drives change in behavior and ultimately creates scalable impact to reduce our plastic (and water!) footprint. Get started by connecting with an OFR Program on your island!
What Makes a Restaurant “Ocean Friendly?”
The Ocean Friendly Restaurants program offers restaurants an easy way to demonstrate their commitment to making sustainable choices for our ocean.
To qualify, restaurants must follow five criteria:
- No expanded polystyrene use (aka Styrofoam).
- Proper recycling practices are followed.
- Only reusable foodware is used for onsite dining. *
- No plastic bags offered with take out or to-go orders and utensils are provided only upon request.
- Paper straws are provided only upon request.**
* Foodware includes dinnerware, drinkware, silverware, and ramekins/containers.
** Exceptions may be made for alternatives made from other naturally occurring materials and reusables.
And choose a minimum of two of the following criteria:
- No beverages sold in plastic bottles.
- Discount is offered for customers with reusable cup, mug, bag, etc.
- Vegetarian/vegan food options are offered on a regular basis
- All seafood must be a ‘Best Choice’ or ‘Good Alternative’ as defined by Seafood Watch or certified as sustainable.
- Water conservation and pollution mitigation efforts are implemented.
- Energy efficiency efforts are in place.
Restaurants who meet all of the criteria are recognized as a Platinum Level Ocean Friendly Restaurant.