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Sustainability Resource Hub: new eco-friendly attributes, business resources, and more

Photo by Sarah Chai

Small business owners make choices that affect the environment every day—whether it’s sourcing inventory from a local producer or eliminating single-use plastics. And while preserving the environment requires systemic change, business owners possess collective power to influence their industries, consumers, and local governments by making sustainability a priority. 

In honor of Earth Day, Yelp is launching a suite of new eco-friendly business attributes to recognize businesses that are committed to sustainable practices—and connect them to customers who care. More than 60% of U.S. consumers say they consider sustainability a major factor when making a purchase, and many are willing to pay more for products or services that are better for the environment.

Check out Yelp’s new attributes and other resources to learn how to communicate your eco-friendly values to customers and join a community of businesses making sustainable choices for the environment. 

Eco-friendly business attributes
From the Yelp blog
Upcoming events and on-demand videos
Business resources

Eco-friendly business attributes 

Business owners can add the following eco-friendly attributes to display on their Yelp Page. These, free searchable attributes help consumers find and support local businesses who have sustainable practices. Choose from:

  • EV charging stations available
  • Plastic-free packaging
  • Provides reusable tableware
  • Bring your own container allowed 
  • Compostable containers available 

In addition to those listed above, other relevant attributes include “Bike parking” and “Vegan.” 

How to add the new eco-friendly attributes to your Yelp Page

  1. Log in to Yelp for Business (Business Information tab)
  2. In the Amenities section, click Add or Edit 
  3. Select Yes next to to each applicable attribute
  4. Click Save Changes

Beyond selecting these attributes, businesses can also showcase their eco-friendly efforts on Yelp by uploading relevant photos and filling out the “About the business” section.

From the Yelp blog

On-demand videos

Restaurant Industry Town Hall

Yelp for Restaurants’ Josh Kopel chatted with Paul Newnham, director of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 Advocacy Hub

The SDG2 Advocacy Hub coordinates global campaigning and advocacy with the goal of ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture by 2030. This includes equipping a network of 1,000+ chefs from over 90 countries with actions they can use to combat the food issues that are most important to them. This set of actions is called the Chefs’ Manifesto, and it includes things like focusing on plant-based ingredients, valuing natural resources, providing nutritious food that is accessible and affordable for all, and more.

In this recording from April 2022, Paul shared his best tactics, tools, and strategies for:

  • Running a more sustainable operation as a chef or restauranteur
  • Using green measures to cut restaurant costs
  • Marketing techniques to increase perceived value through green initiatives

How everyday chores inspire change with Spin Laundry

Spin Laundry, started in 2014 by Morgan Gary, uniquely prioritizes sustainability by investing in the most energy-efficient machines in the world, providing clients chemical free detergents for free, using LED bulbs, offsetting a portion of their electricity through energy programs, and donating lost clothing and socks to local shelters. 

For the bees

Khaled Almaghafi is like the bees he keeps—hardworking, generous, and respectful. After growing up in a family of beekeepers in Yemen, Khaled moved to California, which he’d heard was paradise for bees. He initially struggled to find a job, but eventually connected with a local in the beekeeping industry. He then went on to start two businesses of his own: Khaled’s Alive Bee Removal Service and Bee Healthy Honey Shop.

Between the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Yemen, which has directly affected his loved ones, and environmental factors continually threatening bee populations, Khaled has endured a range of hardships. But he remains optimistic and persistent, throwing his energy toward teaching community members about beekeeping and supporting his family through his businesses.

Business resources

In conjunction with Plastic Pollution Coalition, Surfrider Foundation, Upstream, ReThink Disposable (Clean Water Fund), Reusable LA, Food Rescue Hero, and more, we’ve collected an array of sustainability resources for businesses.

For all business types

4 impactful sustainable business practices that can make a difference
From the Harvard Business School Online’s Business Insights Blog, this post covers four key business practices and dives into the idea of the “third bottom line.”

5 eco-friendly business practices you can implement in your office (and beyond)
From adding natural light and air ventilation improvements to working with cleaning supply companies who use eco-friendly cleaning bottles and send out refillable tabs that can be mixed with water in the original containers.

Develop a small business sustainability plan
This guide covers why it’s important to have a plan and details the five steps to creating one for your small business.

The role small businesses can play in building a sustainable future
This Forbes article lists the reasons why sustainability in your small business is a smart investment for the future—plus the ways you can integrate it in your business.

Five small business owners on practicing sustainability
This article from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce shares the stories of five business owners, from a family entertainment center in New Jersey to a framing and art supplies company in New Mexico.

Smart steps to sustainability 2.0 
An updated guide from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created digitally and designed for small businesses.

How to achieve zero waste in your business
Zero waste is a tactic to not only help the environment but also to make businesses more efficient with their use of materials. This article breaks down the importance of zero waste and how to implement it step by step.

29 cost-saving sustainability ideas for businesses
Sustainability can save you money. This article contains over two dozen ways to reduce costs while saving the planet. Topics include energy efficiency, waste management, water consumption, and more.

What Is green marketing?
Green marketing allows companies to promote their sustainable business practices and back up their commitment to social responsibility. This guide will teach you how it works and why it’s worth pursuing.

Ways to go green in your small business
Even the smallest business can make an environmental impact. Learn how to go green in small, manageable steps.

An overview of plastic recycling
Some states have more restrictive plastic recycling laws than others. This guide will help you better understand plastic recycling, its impact, and if your state has special recycling laws to follow.

Tools and calculators

Cost Savings Calculator | Courtesy of Upstream
A calculator that helps restaurants determine how much they can save by switching to reusables.

The Understanding Packaging (UP) Scorecard | Courtesy of Plastic Pollution Coalition (PPC) and partners
A free, easy-to-use, science-based online tool that assesses the sustainability impacts of common foodware and food packaging choices.

Foodprints Calculators | Courtesy of Food Rescue Hero
Six different tools to help you understand how much your food choices impact the planet.

Reusable and sustainable foodware guides

Ocean Friendly Foodware Guide | Courtesy of Surfrider
A guide for purchasing foodware like takeout containers, utensils, and cups. It includes a terminology breakdown, tiered foodware suggestions (noted as “best choice,” “good alternative,” and “avoid), and worksheets to help you evaluate the cost and benefits.

Quick Guide to Ocean Friendly Restaurants | Courtesy of Surfrider
A 7-step guide for restaurants to align with Surfrider’s Ocean Friendly Restaurants program, with criteria like no plastic bags, paper straws only provided upon request, and beverages not being sold in plastic bottles.

Bioplastic Guidance for Restaurants | Courtesy of Surfrider
A resource that shares that while bioplastics are often marketed as eco-friendly options, they can still end up as toxic as regular plastics. It explains why that’s the case and what you should use instead.

Choose to Reuse | Courtesy of Reusable LA
A collection of resources that break down why reusables are the best choice for both restaurants and customers, in English and Spanish. It shows that they’re safe and save money, all while protecting the planet. 

Plastic-Free Eateries | Courtesy of Plastic Pollution Coalition (PPC)
A guide for how restaurant and food business owner/operators can reduce plastic in food preparation, service, and delivery.

Upstream’s Learning Hub | Courtesy of Upstream
Includes articles like why compostables and bioplastics aren’t the answer and why we can’t recycle our way out of the problem.

Reuse in Food Service | Courtesy of Upstream
Includes case studies showcasing how restaurants and institutions made the switch to reusables without drastically changing their current dishwashing setup or increasing labor costs.

Overcoming the challenges to reuse | Courtesy of Upstream
In many communities and for many businesses, there are legitimate infrastructure and service gaps, especially for mainstreaming reusable takeout and delivery. This resource lists some of the challenges below and offers potential solutions.

Reuse vs. Single-use: safety, economics, and the environment | Courtesy of Upstream
These guides break down the impact reusables have in these three key areas. For example, the average savings for a small business are between $3,000 and $22,000—with environmental benefits that include eliminating 1,300-2,200 lbs. of waste per business.

The New Reuse Economy | Courtesy of Upstream
Check out the groundbreaking innovation and technology that make it possible for cafes, restaurants, professional offices, temporary venues and events, and college campuses to bring reusables into the food and beverage space.

Food rescue and insecurity

30 Days of Action to celebrate Earth Month | Courtesy of Food Rescue Hero
An April calendar with 30 days of tips for reducing food waste—which can be used by both businesses and individuals (and doesn’t have to be limited to the month of April). 

Food Rescue University | Courtesy of Food Rescue Hero
Learn more about how food rescue works with this robust set of materials that includes more info on the technology that connects food-service businesses, volunteers, and those in need.

412 Food Rescue FAQ | Courtesy of Food Rescue Hero
From a local Philadelphia food rescue, this FAQ answers questions like “how does food rescue work?” and “are donations tax deductible?”

The information above is provided for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice and may not be suitable for your circumstances. Unless stated otherwise, references to third-party links, services, or products do not constitute endorsement by Yelp.

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