Yum Brands opens green restaurant
By Elissa Elan
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (March 6, 2009) Yum! Brands Inc., parent of the Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, KFC, Long John Silver’s and A&W brands, said Friday it had opened its first green restaurant, which it hopes will garner the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, certification.
The restaurant, located in Northampton, Mass., is a dual-branded KFC-Taco Bell store and is designed to use 30 percent less energy and water than a conventionally built structure. Environmentally friendly features of the store include solar energy, LED lighting, energy-efficient kitchen equipment and a low-flow water system. It also employs technology that harvests rainwater to be used for irrigation purposes.
In addition, the store’s interior has been designed with recycled building materials such as sustainably harvested wood. The restaurant also composts and recycles waste and converts its frying oil into biofuel.
Yum is among a growing number of restaurant companies to embrace a green business strategy. In recent months, Panera Bread, CKE Restaurants, Subway and Dunkin Donuts are among operations that have either announced plans to build or have opened LEED-certified stores throughout the United States.