FROM CUBICLE TO CAFETERIA:Take a bite out of GHGs w/ Collaborative Green Lunches by Kira Davis,Zoë Sigle
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You can make the transition using the money you make along the way. Here is how: 1. In the initial phase, start introducing plant based food and at the same time, reduce the varieties of non-plant based food and make them more expensive. Start the plant based food at a higher price than you would need to charge. Use the extra income to pay for compostable ware and set aside some money to buy the reusable ware (and upgrade dishwasher) in the future. Compostables can fill the gap for the time being. You can prepare people for the price “shock” with education materials. Tell people that the higher cost is for the transition and for purchasing compostable/reusable ware. 2. Gradually, you can reduce the price of plant based food and further increase the price of non-plant based food. Also, increase the varieties of plant based food and reduce the varieties of non-plant based food in tandem. This sends strong signals to people to change their behaviors over time. 3. Eventually, the demand for non-plant based food will wane and you can discontinue them at some point. Hopefully by that time you would have already put aside enough money to purchase the reusable ware and dishwasher upgrade etc. If this works for your first cafeterias, this could be a model that can be promoted to others. Paying for the transition with your income and savings made during the transition will make a compelling example for others to follow. Finally, to make a successful transition, it’s imperative that the plant-based food tastes good. Talk to the chefs/owners of popular vegan restaurants in this area and ask them to volunteer/teach and help make your cafeterias successful. The transition will be great for their businesses so I see good reasons for them to help. One thing you should mention in the proposal is the extra cost for operating the cafeteria if it uses all reusables. Someone needs to run the dishwashers and it will cost extra in labor and electricity. You may want to calculate the cost and include that in the proposal.
Feasibility of implementation and uptake
Behavioral change is hard; consider a more gradual approach.
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