Orange County’s Pollution Prevention Champion Spotlight: Avalon Eatery
It takes a great deal of careful thought and creative planning to become a Pollution Prevention (P2) champion, and Avalon Eatery has done just that. The Orange County Environmental Protection Division is thrilled to recognize the environmentally-friendly restaurant for its innovative practices.
Located in Avalon Park, Avalon Eatery has focused on incorporating the P2 fundamentals of reusing existing materials. The restaurant’s managers have come up with novel ideas such as creating table settings with renovated chairs purchased at Goodwill and garage sales, using dining tables made of repurposed wood, and offering linen napkins and serving drinks in glassware to reduce the amount of paper and plastic used. The restaurant even dispenses its Prosecco and Sangria from a tap to cut down on the amount of discarded glass bottles.
“We also offer a scratch menu,” asserted “Nonna Angie,” primary partner at Avalon Eatery. “Our produce is delivered fresh from a local company called Mr. Greenjeans Produce, so we never use any frozen veggies. Our fish comes from Halperns’ and is DNA tested to ensure it was never frozen; it comes to us fresh on ice.”
Vegan menu items are also offered at Avalon Eatery that will allow families to incorporate a “Meatless Monday” into their week. Producing plant-based foods requires far less water and energy compared to meat and dairy production. By choosing to eat a vegan meal, a reduced environmental footprint is a positive result.
The restaurant has integrated additional P2 principles by:
- Decorating the restaurant with repurposed lighting fixtures manufactured from recycled beer and soda cans
- Covering restaurant columns with newspaper clippings and comic book pages, rather than paint
- Offering patrons paper or biodegradable straws only upon request
- Using to-go bags manufactured from recycled paper
- Providing recycled paper products in the restrooms
- Contracting with a company that cleans the used cooking oil trap monthly and uses the contents to manufacture fuel
Additionally, Avalon Eatery has been designated as an Ocean Friendly Restaurant by the nonprofit, Surfrider Foundation. They are following the environmentally-friendly criteria to be part of this free program. If your restaurant is interested in becoming an Ocean Friendly Restaurant, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, Avalon Eatery is also doing its best to teach the next generation about pollution prevention techniques.
“We’ve recently volunteered to work with the Avalon Elementary School team to create a vegetable garden,” added Angie. “Our Executive Chef has offered to work with the children and bring their harvest to the restaurant to serve to our guests when their garden is ready.”
If your business is looking for ways to make a positive environmental impact in Orange County and wants to learn more about its Pollution Prevention program, contact P2@ocfl.net or visit www.ocfl.net/EPD.