We are proud of our collective sustainability actions taking place all around the world. Learn more about how our brands are being good environmental stewards and the impacts they are having by clicking on a country or icon below.
From the way Taco Bell builds their restaurants to the impact they bring to the communities they serve, Taco Bell is implementing sustainable practices across their business. With an aim to lead the industry in sustainability innovation and action, Taco Bell’s goal is to build all future company-owned restaurants according to the Yum! Brands’ Blueline sustainable building standard. They plan to do it by focusing on the “triple bottom line” of people, planet and profits.
Taco Bell has been exploring ways to reduce its environmental footprint since 2009. A new Blueline Taco Bell restaurant uses, on average, 35 percent less energy and 20 percent less water. All of these improvements are based on an average composite 25 percent return on investment target, or better, for all sustainable improvements to help ensure maximum returns and margin improvements. In addition, their current restaurant design will allow them to take advantage of local recycling programs when they become available and prepare them to adopt recycling programs.
Moving forward, Taco Bell will continue to raise the bar on its approach to sustainable construction by integrating the re-use of building material and furnishings and capturing run-off water and the sun’s energy on-site. They are also exploring ways to economically provide more natural light in their kitchens through energy efficient windows, which will create a brighter, cleaner workplace. As they incorporate sustainability into their business, it is equally important to communicate its commitments to employees, partners, suppliers and customers so they too take pride in the improvements being made.
KFC China celebrated the opening of its third Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certified restaurant in Beijing in late 2013. The Xuan Wu Men restaurant features water and energy conservation technologies such as efficient lighting with sunlight harvesting controls and high performing air-conditioning design; setting a high standard for building performance. Electricity and water consumption are tracked by a real-time monitoring system located in the restaurant which enables KFC to continuously optimize energy savings and make future improvements. Since its opening we have measured an annual 20 percent overall energy savings and calculated 50 percent water savings.
Building on the success of these prior certifications, KFC China opened three additional LEED Gold certified restaurants in cities in climatically diverse regions of the country: Chongqing, Shenzhen and Taiyuan. Dedicated teams in each city worked to diligently build their knowledge and plant the seeds of industry changing green building practices. Completion of these foundational buildings places KFC as a market leader in developing stores that are better for the environment and sets the stage for achieving our goal of new buildings being 100 percent LEED certifiable buildings using the Blueline roadmap established by Yum! Brands.
Exploring ways to reduce Taco Bell’s environmental footprint has been a big focus of the brand since 2009 and we have made great strides while serving customers delicious food, an awesome experience and remaining attractive to our business partners.
As Taco Bell looks to become a leader in sustainability, the company is taking action to improve its design and equipment in existing restaurants to benefit its customers and environment. The brand has already retrofitted more than 900 restaurants (about 14 percent of all Taco Bell restaurants) with energy and water efficient measures which will result in substantial energy and water use reductions. Thanks to these improvements, as well as the new sustainable ground-up restaurants design, Taco Bell has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions system wide. Our updated sustainable restaurant design reduces CO2 emissions by approximately 28 metric tons per restaurant per year vs. our pre-2009 design. Taco Bell intends to improve on this year-over-year as one of our main goals.
KFC Australia made history in 2013 with the grand opening of the country’s first LEED certified quick service restaurant located in East Maitland, New South Wales. The store is expected to reduce overall energy consumption by at least 16 percent thanks to technologies and approaches such as the installation of LED lighting, innovative daylight and motion sensors in strategic areas, as well as industry-leading kitchen ventilation technology.
In 2015, KFC Australia opened its second LEED certified store in Lidcombe, New South Wales which allowed it to refine its approaches to the Blueline standard that balances energy conservation, environmental footprint and economics. Enhancements include a more compact building size, LED lighting, more efficient cooking equipment and improved extract hoods. Energy conservation programs resulting from its green building research has reduced energy consumption across its portfolio by six percent.
A range of water-saving measures have also been implemented, such as the installation of water efficient landscaping, tankless water heaters and high efficiency water fixtures and fittings in bathrooms, which are expected to reduce water use by up to 35 percent.
The success of KFC Australia’s LEED certified stores have assisted in the development of the global sustainable development standards which have been streamlined to gain the greatest energy efficiency for its stores.
In 2009, KFC United Kingdom began investigating ways to build more sustainable restaurants with lower carbon emissions by piloting energy saving measures at Wisbech in Cambridgeshire and later at Wincanton in Somerset which achieved a BREEAM Very Good Rating and LEED Gold certification.These energy saving approaches allow the store to save an estimated 310 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) each year-the equivalent of taking 22 cars off the road.
Many of the energy reductions come from a more efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. An energy management system also controls all power usage, including when to turn on and off each fryer. Other measures include LED throughout the restaurant, including car parks and signage, as well as daylight-saving photocell lights.
Now in operation, the restaurant recycles three waste streams: cardboard, kitchen food waste and cooking oil. Used cooking oil is converted on-site into electricity and heat for water. Water use is reduced through low consumption equipment such as low-flow taps and pre-rinse valves. Since the completion of those projects we have also undertaken BREEAM compliant buildings in Denton and Middleton. Together, these projects have prepared us well to build all new company-owned stores to be LEED certifiable using the streamlined Yum! Blueline standards.
One important aspect of the Yum! Brands’ green building program is the optimization of resources. In other words, using materials smartly. Wherever possible the KFC U.K. and Ireland team use building materials with recycled content. For example, in its LEED Certified KFC in Wincanton, United Kingdom, 14 percent of basic building materials are from recycled sources. New raw materials are also sourced smartly by using timber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
Construction processes generate waste and green projects need to manage this component well. Its world class waste management program diverts more than 96 percent of construction waste away from landfills. Although progress has been made, it continues to research new materials and methods to improve the use of materials during construction.
With a global partnership bringing international expertise together with local know-how, KFC Thailand has step-changed building practices in the country during the last three years. KFC is the first quick service restaurant operator in Thailand to commit to developing green restaurants. The main focus is on design and construction using energy saving and low emission materials to reduce its environmental footprint.
As part of this effort, the design of the air-conditioning and ventilation system has been improved for the benefit of customer comfort and reduced energy consumption. Results from green development is showing up to a 40 percent reduction in energy, 60 percent in water and 75 percent in construction waste. They currently have 11 restaurants certified under LEED (Eight Gold and three Certified).
As the leading quick service restaurant brand in Thailand, KFC is committed to innovating and reducing the environmental footprint of our new and existing restaurants. Thailand’s target is to design and build every new store green and according to the Yum! Brands’ Blueline standard. Blueline provides a global, restaurant specific path to LEED certification that provides local flexibility. It is a perfect example of the sustainability mantra think global, act locally.
In the Malaysian university town of Nilai, located just outside of Kuala Lumpur, history was made with the opening of the first green built restaurant in the country.
“With the rapid development of our country and being the largest quick service restaurant brand in Malaysia, it is important for us to lead the industry towards a direction that is more environmentally friendly,” said Felix Michael, Chief Development Officer, QSR Brands (M) Holdings Sdn Bhd (Operator of KFC and Pizza Hut Malaysia). “These are just the early days in our journey and we will strive to find new and better solutions for a greener environment.”
The franchisee designed this building to reduce energy consumption by 30 percent and to save water. It is designed to use solar power to generate 100 percent of the hot water required for the kitchen to save energy. Smart lighting design with the use of natural sunlight, LED lights and integrated control systems is projected to use 55 percent less energy to keep the building lit. Other green aspects include the capture and reuse of rainwater for irrigation as well as providing used cooking oil for conversion to biodiesel.
The Nilai restaurant is highly decorated as it has received three green building certifications. In addition to globally recognized LEED Gold, the building received the Green Mark Platinum award, the highest form of recognition, by the Building & Construction Authority of Singapore as well as the Gold level from the Malaysian Green Building KFC.
In South Africa, KFC is on a journey to be environmentally responsible by integrating sustainable practices into the way they do business. “We are currently investigating ways to further improve sustainable practices in the construction and operation of our buildings. We take pride in doing our part for the future of South Africa,” stated Tatiana Lambert, Associate Director of Development.
KFC’s newest restaurants comprehensively incorporate, inside and out, efficient LED lighting. It has also refurbished more than 450 existing restaurants with the same technology, with more being converted every year. In keeping with its objective to reduce total energy consumption, KFC South Africa now uses heat pumps to generate hot water in new buildings. KFC South Africa has reduced the size of its restaurants by approximately 25 percent which reduces raw materials used during construction, operates more efficiently and contributes to reducing its carbon footprint.
All of these measures are contributing to building restaurants that meet the Yum! Brands’ Blueline standard. KFC South Africa is committed to building its first holistically green restaurant based on LEED/Blueline green building standards in 2016 and building Blueline compliant company-owned restaurants.
This is just the start of the journey. KFC South Africa has implemented smart utility metering in all company-owned restaurants and has been joined by several franchisee partners, through a third party service provider, to monitor energy consumption. The gathered data will contribute to developing the green building solutions of the future.
France’s KFC restaurant in the city of Orleans, which opened in 2013, is one of the greenest built restaurants and is officially the second LEED Gold restaurant in France. KFC Orleans includes a number of innovations such as natural lighting, solar hot water, low-water using restroom fixtures, high-efficiency automated landscape sprinklers and rainwater harvesting.
KFC has also created signage to teach customers about the environmental benefits of the innovations, which they plan to incorporate in future buildings. The Orleans green project is just one part of KFC France’s commitment to reducing its environmental footprint for the benefit of customers, employees, stakeholders and the planet.
“LEED offers a wealth of ideas that are easy to apply,” said Philippe Rouzier, head of construction for KFC France. “Our objective is to share our best practices from Orleans with all of our restaurants.” To that end we are working to integrate approaches and technologies that we have tested and proven to be effective and affordable within our standard building design. We are following the Yum! roadmap to developing LEED certifiable buildings, called Blueline. This effort is part of our broader commitment to building a social responsible company through the “PACT” that focuses on our people, food, community and environment to help create a better France and better world.
Pizza Hut U.S. has continued to focus on environmental sustainability in its restaurants and has made significant progress in its goal to reduce its environmental footprint. Pizza Hut continues to utilize its compact and efficient design for delivery focused buildings for new development. The footprint itself is extremely compact (just 1,100 sq. ft.), thereby reducing energy consumption and the quantity of materials required to build the store.
Pizza Hut has constructed and is awaiting certification of its first LEED restaurant, and intends to pursue several more in the near future. Through the development of this store, Pizza Hut has transitioned all new build projects to LED lighting and low flow plumbing fixtures to align with LEED and Yum! Brands’ Blueline standards.
With nearly 6,400 restaurants in the U.S., addressing existing facilities is a key initiative in Pizza Hut’s sustainability focus. Accordingly, Pizza Hut is installing communicating thermostats to better control energy use and comfort in 143 stores resulting in a total estimated savings of $200,000 a year. Following this initial installation, all corporate locations will receive the upgraded system. Outdated HVAC units in 33 stores are being replaced with an estimated annual energy savings of $100,000. Pizza ovens are the heart of its business and it has started a replacement program to remove over 1,000 outdated and inefficient ovens to reduce its environmental footprint and generate annual savings of nearly $1.2 million.
Pizza Hut has implemented a lamp program to reduce energy consumption, improve air quality, reduce waste and reduce or eliminate the use of heavy metals in its lamps. All lamps now have an LED specification in new construction and remodels with replacement options in existing stores. Additionally, all of its new and replacement exterior signs are now specified with LED internal lighting. Pizza Hut continues to evaluate technologies in efforts to reduce its environmental footprint.
We have been encouraging KFC franchisees across Central and Eastern Europe to focus on reducing construction waste to keep unwanted materials out of landfills. This is an example of how we are applying lessons learned from Yum! Brands’ Blueline green building roadmap.
As part of this effort, we have been mindful of our restaurant design and have been able to reduce waste by reducing the need to cut cladding panels and other products by using smarter dimensioning. In 2014, this saved an estimated 35,521 sq. ft. of material (3,300m2) waste in new and remodeled buildings.
KFC U.S. has been working up the recipe for a successful, home cooked sustainability approach focused on delivering an improved environmental footprint, world class customer experience and long-term shareholder value. KFC is proud of its LEED Gold certified test store located in Indianapolis, Indiana that opened in 2011. This store successfully reduced energy use and costs by 25 percent by incorporating approaches such as reducing the building footprint, efficient kitchen equipment, an optimized HVAC system and high efficiency lighting. In addition, KFC looked to improve its use of materials by including products with recycled content, construction waste recycling, and white roofing to reduce the heat island effect.
Many of these innovations have been incorporated into its evolving building designs going forward through today. KFC is committed to the goal of 100 percent of company-owned LEED certifiable buildings. The know-how built in this project allows KFC U.S. to commit to the goal of having all Blueline buildings. This is the recipe that will drive cost effective environmental improvements through a focus on energy efficiency, water conservation and building size reduction.
In 2014, an impressive KFC received LEED Silver certification in the city that first rose to prominence in the Middle Ages; Braunschweig, Germany. This is demonstrated by the development of a right-sized new building prototype, which was released in 2015, which follows the Blueline roadmap Yum! Brands developed for LEED certifiable buildings. These include energy management systems, waterless urinals, state of the art heating and air-conditioning systems, heat recovery and LED lighting to name just a few. These approaches are now standard throughout all KFC Germany restaurants.
The know-how built in this project allows KFC Germany to commit to the goal of having all LEED certifiable buildings though the implementation of Yum! Brands’ Blueline standards. They recognize that there is more work to be done along their sustainability journey and are committed to testing new technologies and approaches.
Mexico KFC and Pizza Hut franchisee, Premium Restaurant Brands, has scored a goal with sustainability. As Pamela Vaga, Sustainability Manager said, “Not only is it good for the environment, it makes sense for the bottom line.” It has been instituted as a strategic pillar of their business focused on the fundamental categories of energy, water, waste and recycling, and people and culture.
Greener restaurants are a core component of this plan and important changes are being made to restaurant design, construction and operations to support the sustainability vision. These include the use of LED lighting fixtures, energy management systems, high efficiency water fixtures and the recycling of used cooking oil. In 2015, LED lighting and high efficiency HVAC equipment were made standard in new restaurant projects. The HVAC equipment improvements are projected to reduce energy consumption by 30 percent.
These are the initial strategies on the sustainability path in Mexico, however, the job is not yet finished. The franchisee continues to seek improvement and grow upon these early results with new innovation and approaches. With this continued focus, additional goals will be scored.
In 2013, a KFC restaurant in Chennai, India achieved LEED Gold certification. The Besant Nagar store earned a score of 76 LEED points, surpassing the 60 LEED points required to achieve a gold rating and achieving the highest score for a Yum! Brands restaurant.
Within one year of operations, the restaurant saved 42 percent of water by using fixtures designed for lower water use and cutting 30 percent in energy costs through technologies such as high efficiency air conditioning, ventilation, low-power LED lighting and more efficient kitchen equipment. The restaurant’s coastal location is particularly helpful in conserving energy. Sensors located adjacent the building’s generous windows help control artificial lighting allowing the restaurant to rely on sunlight during the day. In addition, a solar collector on the roof assists in pre-heating water, reducing the need for fossil fuels.
The team developed and installed signage that highlights the green aspects of the building. This allows customers to learn about how KFC India is working to improve the environment while enjoying their favorite KFC foods.
At Taco Bell, remodels and maintenance are a growing opportunity to reduce impact on the local environment and refresh their restaurants’ image while maximizing profitability.
With each company remodel and maintenance equipment update its goal is to reduce local utility consumption by using energy efficient air conditioning equipment, lighting, heat reflecting roofing, water efficient plumbing fixtures, as well as water wise irrigation systems where the local weather conditions make irrigation necessary. These improvements can result in up to 15 percent energy savings, 10 percent building-water savings and 40 percent in irrigation water conservation when implemented. In many restaurants, Taco Bell is also replacing old inefficient HID lot light fixtures with energy efficient fixtures.
Taco Bell’s sustainability vision extends beyond these current practices. It’s exploring the use of ultra-high efficient air conditioning units to replace existing units, as well as switching to more efficient kitchen equipment.
KFC U.S. has initiated a bold restaurant remodel program with franchisees in late 2015 that will result in the updating of approximately 2,400 buildings by the end of 2017. To reduce construction and incentivize participation, replacing the flooring was not a requirement for the remodel. As a result, KFC U.S. anticipates that 4.9 million pounds of floor tile, grout and setting material will be diverted from landfills. Restaurants installing new flooring will use tiles containing 40 percent pre-consumer recycled content. In addition to flooring, KFC U.S. has taken an approach of largely installing elements over existing walls and counter structures which will also avoid sending waste to landfills.
KFC U.S.’s remodel program, known as the American Showman, is providing dynamic, well-lit spaces for consumers. Lighting can vastly improve the quality of the dining room experience and provide ongoing energy savings with a reasonable construction cost. Under the program, high efficiency LED lighting is being installed to save energy and to create a warmer and more inviting interior compared to previously installed fluorescent lighting. Being sustainable is good for business and design. As a result of upgrading to LED lighting in restaurant dining rooms, the amount of consumed energy was reduced significantly in 95 percent of the restaurants in the program. Approximately 2,600 restaurants in the system will have LED lighting by the conclusion of the remodel program at the end of 2017.
During the past year KFC France has worked diligently to incorporate energy and water saving approaches into its standard construction documents so that every building will meet the Yum! Brands’ Blueline standard. These implemented technologies include 100 percent LED lighting for interior and outdoor areas, more efficient cooking equipment and an optimized cold room design. To reduce water use, they now have landscaping that is regionalized for the different area of France as well as a new optimized irrigation system. All of these 2015 measures build upon its 2014 integration of a heat pump based HVAC system and more efficient kitchen exhaust hoods.
The winters in Russia are known for being long so Yum! Russia design and construction team is working diligently to keep its customers comfortable using less energy. As a first step, the team optimized the quantity of window surface and improved its specification resulting in heating savings of about 20 percent. Seeing this early success in 2015 and being committed to implementing the technologies and approaches in Yum! Brands’ Blueline standard, the team is now committed to start construction of a LEED certified building in 2016.
KFC Philippines made local history when it opened its first building built to LEED standards at Fort Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City.
High efficiency air-conditioning units were used as well as low-E (low-emissivity) glass capable of minimizing the amount of ultraviolet and infrared light while letting visible light into the restaurant. LED lights were installed for efficiency as well motion sensors to keep lights off in unoccupied areas of the back-of-house. With the application of these approaches the restaurant is expected to see energy savings of up to 25 percent. In terms of water savings, the use of high efficiency flush fixture reduces the amount of water usage in flush fixtures by 32 percent.
The commitment to promoting environmental sustainability will continue on future projects as the same design specifications will be applied to all succeeding free-standing drive-thru restaurants.
The number one pizza brand in Mongolia is also the first to start on a green building journey by building a flagship restaurant located on Peace Avenue, Bayangol District, Ulaanbaatar. The building has become an iconic area landmark.
Sustainable building design elements such as LED lighting (interior, exterior and signage), high-efficiency kitchen equipment, engineered ventilation hoods, solar powered parking lights, sensor type faucets and low-water consumption restroom fixtures have been incorporated.
“We are committed to Corporate Social Responsibility and Building Sustainability,” stated our franchise partner Hulan Dashdavaa, CEO of Tavan Bogd Foods Pizza LLC, at the grand opening. “This is our way of giving back to our community.”
KFC U.K. is now purchasing 100 percent renewable power for its restaurants. Power comes from a mix of wind, wave, solar, biomass and anaerobic digestion procured through Reconciled Renewable Energy (RRE) guaranteed by Renewable Energy Guarantee of Origin (REGO) certificates.
Although its power is green, KFC U.K. is always looking to reduce its cosumption. They completed their Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme audit in 2015, which was ahead of the required government deadline. This work will help hit the target of reducing energy use by 20 percent by 2020.
Across Australia KFC associates at company-owned restaurants are turning on the lights with confidence and with the knowledge that they are efficiently illuminating their restaurants. Dining room general lighting has been retrofitted with efficient LED technology. This retrofit is estimated to reduce energy consumption of lighting up to 70 percent. Parking lot lights have also been improved as metal halide technology has been replaced with lower wattage induction lights. They are not only energy efficient but last an estimated five times longer. We have now retrofitted all company-owned locations in Australia.
Exhausting hot air from above cooking equipment is an important requirement for all restaurants. This is also a major use of energy. To reduce energy consumption, yet maintain needed exhaust, we added controls whereby the exhaust fan knows when equipment is turned on and cooking. As a result, the controls can reduce the exhaust rate when the cooking equipment is not being used to save energy. This system has been implemented in all KFC company-owned restaurants in Australia and is being embraced by franchisee owned restaurants as well.
Restaurant general managers in KFC Australia are being educated about the importance of energy conservation and have been provided with an online portal to view their restaurant’s energy usage trend data. Access to this near-live information empowers them to take ownership of energy consumption and to make adjustments to reduce usage. Using this tool they can evaluate if their morning “power-up” schedule, which encourages them to switch on equipment only when needed, is being used effectively. This has been implemented in company-owned restaurants and across many franchised stores.
One of KFC’s highly successful initiatives from its certified green building projects has been LED lighting. They have been so impressed with its performance that they have now retrofitted it into all company-owned restaurants. With this change the expectation is to save 75 percent of lighting energy while continuing to provide 100 percent of the lighting needed to provide an exciting and inviting experience to customers and associates.
Taco Bell aims to lead the industry in sustainability innovation and action started with a small but substantial change that was made to the interior Taco Bell lighting design in 2013. Restaurant base designs were updated to include dining room LED ceiling lights as standard. Implementing this change saves energy and results in less waste and time spent by employees changing light bulbs due to the new technology and useful life of the product. Today, the brand’s new interior lighting design has since been implemented across all new restaurants at some level and was included in many of the renovations in 2014, resulting in over 25,000 fixtures installed and substantial savings.
Going green is not a destination, it is a journey – that's our philosophy at Yum! Brands. The journey to optimized lighting in China is a great example. In a series of steps, they worked to refine both the amount of lighting and applied technology to provide substantial energy savings and improve the look of KFC dining rooms. By using this technology, they have achieved a 50 percent reduction in lighting energy use. In 2015, KFC China rolled out this new lighting design in over 900 KFC restaurants.
Beginning in 2009, Yum! Brands began implementing a strategy to reduce our carbon footprint and provide a more fuel-efficient corporate passenger vehicle fleet in the United States. Since the start of the program, we have cut CO2 emissions by eliminating vehicles with six-cylinder engines and increasing the use of hybrids. Hybrid vehicles account for 11 percent of our total fleet vehicles in 2015. In addition, we implemented two compact car pilots for Pizza Hut and Taco Bell restaurant projects. We will continue to identify the most effective use of hybrids and improved fuel efficiency of service vehicles.
Ever since KFC opened its first company-owned store in Spain, it has been working on ways to reduce energy consumption and make buildings greener. After studying possible options, it was decided to develop a system to automatically control energy use in the restaurant. Determining how it would work was the next question. Basically, they used a simple computer connected to the switches in the power panel. Operations and quality assurance experts created a schedule which is programmed into the computer to switch on and off everything from dining room lighting to the cooking equipment. This smarter design has allowed KFC Spain to reduce the system size by 30 percent. The smaller system has been able to generate an annual energy savings reduction of 15 percent and has also reduced the amount of human intervention needed to run the restaurant efficiently. They will continue to work to reduce energy consumption and build greener restaurants.
In 2013, KFC U.K. commissioned an energy consultant to help develop an ambitious energy reduction target and program for our restaurants to cut energy use and carbon. Following the completion of the study we announced our target of reducing total energy use per customer transaction by 20 percent by 2020 from 2012. Our operations teams will focus on year-over-year improvements and an overall investment of over $10 million in new and existing restaurants over the period to meet our goal.
Across the nation in 2014, Taco Bell restaurants changed their parking lot lamps for greater efficiency as part of an effort to reduce its local utility consumption. During the course of the project 6,841 lamps were changed for an anticipated annual savings of just over 1,000,000 watts. Replaced lamps were recycled whenever possible. Retrofitting parking lot lighting with more energy efficient lamps and fixtures not only reduced operating costs, it improved overall lighting levels, enhanced safety at night and is good for the environment
As part of Taco Bell’s sustainability vision, the brand is changing its new store air conditioning system designs to variable speed technology to help reduce its cost of operating a restaurant and reduce its carbon footprint. Rough estimates indicate a 20 percent or better reduction in energy consumption when using variable speed technology combined with high efficiency exhaust hoods. This is the first step in greater air conditioning efficiency. Taco Bell feels there is much more opportunity available and intends to improve their performance in this area of design.
In 2014, Yum! Brands renovated half of our corporate headquarters and replaced over 1,900 fluorescent and incandescent light fixtures with new LED lighting. The resulting change is expected to save 200,000 watts of electricity each year. This will avoid the release of an estimated 457 metric tons of carbon dioxide into that atmosphere and is equivalent to removing 96 passenger vehicles from the road.
The 225,000 square foot Colonel Sanders Technical Center was the focus of renovations in 2015. In the project Yum! continued the corporate campus installation of LED light fixtures. Over 2,800 older technology lights were replaced with 1,800 LED lights to reduce electricity consumption due to lighting by 45 percent and to reduce air-conditioning energy. We also used low VOC paints, formaldehyde free insulation and low VOC carpet adhesive as part of the renovation.
Although high efficiency lighting LED fixtures are being used by many franchisees throughout Central and Eastern Europe, KFC in Lithuania is going further by improving how lighting is controlled. Occupancy sensors detect if people are present in areas of the restaurant and if the room is empty, lighting is reduced or turned off. Each store is saving a total of approximately 740 hours of lighting each year.
In sunny California, a forward thinking Taco Bell franchisee installed a 200 foot long roof over the drive-thru that is covered with solar panels. This building is the first mostly solar powered restaurant for the brand. Although it is not feasible for every Taco Bell restaurant to be solar powered at this time, this is an inspiring example of one possible path to reduce our local environmental footprint. An additional test, although more limited, is being conducted at a restaurant outside of El Paso, Texas where Taco Bell is evaluating solar panels that can generate enough electricity to power about 25 percent of its lighting.
You might not expect that the design and optimization of the Heating, Ventilation and Air-Conditioning System (HVAC) is one of the most important aspects to controlling energy consumption in a restaurant – but it is. Designs must provide a healthy, comfortable environment using the lowest amount of energy possible. This sounds easy, but maintaining comfortable conditions with low energy use is a design challenge. The team in China has implemented the use of high efficiency HVAC units that vary the flow of refrigerant based upon the cooling and heating needs in the different areas of its stores. This HVAC system uses energy only when it’s needed providing a comfortable restaurant and doing so very efficiently.
An innovative technology is being used in KFC South Africa to provide hot water. Heat pump systems, which take warmth out of the air and puts it into water, is capable of generating all of a restaurant’s hot water needs while reducing energy consumption up to 60 percent compared to the traditional system. As an added benefit, cool air is generated as a byproduct of this process and improves comfort. KFC South Africa is currently using heat pumps in 50 percent of company-owned restaurants with plans to add to the remaining balance of the restaurants in the next two years.
An energy management system was implemented in 127 KFC and 89 Pizza Hut restaurants by our franchisee, Premium Restaurant Brands, in 2015. The technologies control consumption of both electricity and gas. Electricity reductions represent 12 percent of their baseline consumption. This is one approach that they have taken to become more efficient as they work to benefit the environment.
KFC South Africa is moving towards using the newest and more efficient hot holding cabinets which are used to keep great tasting food ready for customers. They are designed with advanced humidity and temperature control technology to maintain the ideal holding conditions. The design also allows for better utilization of the cabinets so that efficiency can be improved and energy saved. These new cabinets are the gold standard for hot holding and will be used in new restaurants.
During the course of 2015, the Chinese team prepared for Blueline by incorporating a number of green technologies into the design of new buildings. A new kitchen hood design has been approved for KFC that is anticipated to reduce energy consumption at least 20 percent. Hot water will be more efficiently generated using heat pump technology that will cut energy consumption approximately 40 percent. Water used in the restaurants for sanitation will be reduced by over 70 percent with water saving fixture package that will be used by both Pizza Hut and KFC.
Reducing energy consumption is an important component of developing greener restaurants. Pizza Hut company-owned restaurants in Korea are now using all LED lighting-inside and out. The process of making the change for new construction and remodels, which started in 2013, grew to include the dining room, back-of-house, exterior signs and exterior lighting. The lighting has been installed in 118 existing restaurants.
High efficiency air conditioning is also being used. As a result of these initiatives an annual energy reduction of approximately 20 percent has been achieved. The market is making plans to specify equipment that will require 35 percent less refrigeration in the systems. With the success of these projects, the Pizza Hut team is eager to continue exploring green buildings in South Korea.
With each remodel and maintenance equipment update, Taco Bell’s goal is reduce its local utility consumption. Irrigation sprinklers are one of the hidden users of water. Built on the successful implementation of measures at the Yum! Brands corporate office in Louisville, Kentucky where we reduced water consumption by 30 percent, amounting to about 1 million gallons of water each year, Taco Bell took up the cause and rolled out improved irrigation systems in many of its U.S. restaurants in 2014. With the improvements, Taco Bell has reduced irrigation water consumption by an estimated 40 percent.
Our restaurants are finding that water conservation does not have to be challenging and makes financial sense. KFC restaurants in the Czech Republic, Cyprus and Romania are using water saving technologies such as low flow faucets and low flow fixtures. Water consumption is estimated to have been reduced by 12 percent by applying these approaches. This is an example of how we are applying lessons learned from Yum! Brands’ Blueline green building roadmap to reduce our environmental footprint by making better use of our resources.
Water conservation is a concern in many parts of Australia and at KFC they are continuing to strive for greater efficiency in new stores through a range of water-saving measures including the installation of water efficient landscaping, high efficiency water faucets and restroom fixtures. In addition, above ground water tanks are now included as part of the new sustainable building standards.
We’ve carefully studied the water used for irrigation for our restaurants and as part of this effort high efficiency spray valves combined with intelligent controls have been installed at Yum! Brands’ headquarters in Louisville, KY. Although at the time of the design, the change was estimated to reduce water usage by over 30 percent, careful measurement revealed a different result. In 2014, the first full calendar year after having updated our irrigation system, we were pleased to measure savings slightly more than 1.1 million gallons which delivered a nearly 40 percent reduction in water use while maintaining a healthy and green landscape.
Beneath a KFC parking lot in France is a 10,000 liter tank that holds rainwater collected from the roof. Although not seen by many people, this system provides water to restroom sanitary fixtures. This test, its second for rainwater harvesting in France, has been able to reduce reliance on the sanitary use of potable water by approximately 80 percent during 2014.
Customers and employees at the LEED restaurant in Chennai, India are now washing their hands in a more earth-friendly way. This facility installed highly efficient water saving generators in 2012. These small inserts for faucets control the flow rate of water and yield significant water savings. In fact, KFC India anticipates a saving over 18,000 gallons of water per year.
Yum! China has made strides in the sustainability of its packaging. In 2013, the team reduced the weight of tray liners and french fry boxes and also optimized the structure of their congee cups to reduce the volume transported annually. Progress continued in 2014, with the replacement of plastic bowls, bags and cups with paper packaging in Jilin Province. In 2015, plastic congee and soup cups changed to paper across the country. They also reduced the amount of paper used in sandwich boxes and the tray liners to reduce their environmental footprint. These two during the past year changes have resulted in a reduction in annual paper use by 1,631 tons.
While many South Africans are proud to claim that Johannesburg is the largest, man-made urban forest, there is even more reason for them to be proud of South Africa’s leading position in offering sustainable packaging. Its paper packaging is made either from recycled paper or from 100 percent FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) certified virgin paper from sustainable forestry operations. KFC South Africa has been driving to achieve maximum recycled content in our paper packaging.
As part of the sustainability journey in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), they partnered with a company, Ecovention, LLC, to implement their innovative pizza box design, named The Greenbox, in Pizza Hut restaurants. This box is manufactured from recycled material and has other advantages such as the ability to transform into individual serving plates and fold into a smaller pizza box for storing leftovers. Its simple brown paper design replaced previous full color pizza box in the region in 2014; saving energy, water and other resources. This simple yet effective packaging improvement demonstrates the desire to lead by example as they work to reduce their environmental footprint continuing to serve hot, fresh pizza to customers.
Yum! India partners with ITC Limited to source 100 percent of its paperboard. This company is known for its commitment to sustainable practices. ITC is the first paper company in the country to obtain Forest Stewardship Council Forest Management (FSC FM) certification. They also established India’s first use of elemental chlorine free fiber line and ozone bleaching technology. Since early 2014 its paperboard packaging in India has been FSC certified. Optimized packaging design and specifications have also allowed Yum! India to reduce its consumption of paperboard by eight metric tons annually. Yum! India is pleased that its efforts and this partnership have been able to reduce its environmental footprint on the planet.
KFC U.S. strives to achieve 100 percent certified sourcing of pulp and paper-based packaging by the end of 2020. They have made significant progress in this area in 2015, increasing the amount of certified pulp by more than 1.8 million pounds. More than 98.8 percent of KFC’s pulp and paper-based retail packaging is now third-party certified as responsibly sourced.
KFC Australia is committed to making sustainable packaging a priority. As a signatory to the Australian Packaging Covenant (APC), they constantly evaluate packaging design, embedding the Sustainable Packaging Guidelines into their processes and new product development. They have made significant inroads with their APC annual action plans.
KFC U.K. and Ireland is providing food to some of the most disadvantaged communities through a food waste collection program across the country. In March 2015, 60 restaurants were participating which means they are working with dozens of charities to donate unused chicken and have provided the equivalent of over 3,000 meals. The number of participating restaurants will rapidly increase in 2016 as the roll-out accelerates and by July it will be in 200 restaurants and by the end of the year in half of all KFC restaurants! They anticipate that up to a tonne of food per store can be donated each year through local charity partners including Ace of Clubs, Salvation Army, YMCA London and NOAH Enterprise. Please click here to see the program in action.
KFC Australia participates in Foodbank’s Food Rescue Program, allowing donations of useable products to people in need. Through its efforts, 85 percent of its suppliers have also signed up to be national signatories with Foodbank. In 2015, KFC Australia proudly donated more than 29,000 meals. To date, it’s donated more than 103,000 kilograms of food, equating to over 145,000 meals.
“KFC has been a valuable partnership for Foodbank, providing a range of products from meats to sauces and seasoning, all of which are critical in helping Foodbank deliver over 166,000 meals to Australians in need every day. These meals are distributed to over 2,400 welfare agencies across the country and help support the 2 million Australians who seek food support each year. KFC’s ongoing commitment to Foodbank is a clear demonstration that they have joined the fight to end hunger in Australia” Jason Hinks, Chief Executive Officer Foodbank Australia.
Customers in Malaysia can call for home delivery with the satisfaction of knowing that their delicious KFC meals are delivered hot and fresh on electric scooters that are better for the environment. The scooters are plug-in vehicles that can be recharged at any outlet and emit zero carbon dioxide, smoke and noise on the streets. In addition to lowering the company's carbon footprint, they also lower costs and decrease delivery time. KFC Malaysia currently has over 100 electric scooters in its fleet and is leading the pack among quick-service restaurants by introducing electric scooters for deliveries.
Acting locally is important. In our hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, Yum! Brands is an active member in efforts to create a sustainable and healthier community. The Louisville Sustainability Council is a public-private partnership that works to engage and collaborate with the community to facilitate the achievement of the city’s published sustainability goals. Yum! Brands is an important contributor in this organization and serves on the board of directors. In 2015, Yum! Brands sponsored the organization’s community wide sustainability summit focusing on the region’s air quality.
The five action teams that have been established by the organization represent a broad spectrum of the community and address areas of concern such as tree canopy, green economy and community engagement. The organization, in partnership with the Louisville Office of Sustainability, manages the community’s participation in the Star Communities program which is the nation’s first standardized, comprehensive framework for evaluating the sustainably of cities.
Pizza Hut has designated the last week of May, since 2009, as “Pizza Hut Environmental Protection Week” in restaurants throughout China to promote concept of green living to consumers. Making the journey to a greener future will require the participation of all. To that end, it also launched the Pizza Hut Green Scout Camp in 2010, to encourage the Student Society of Universities to deliver six courses of environmental protection knowledge, taught over the course of one year, to primary school students. Students become a Pizza Hut Green Scout if they successfully collect a pin by completing each of the six courses.
In September 2012, the Pizza Hut Green Scout program became mandatory in the Xiaozhuang primary school in Nanjing. By the end of 2015, nearly 190,000 primary school students had completed the courses. The program is growing to become one of the most influential environmental education projects in China and a great example of how Pizza Hut China aims to bring two generations together to work for a green future.
Yum! Brands Corporate offices through the United States are focusing on the three-R strategy of waste recovery: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Office paper, corrugated cardboard, plastic, glass, batteries and aluminum are collected and recycled. In 2015 alone, our corporate headquarters recycled over 106,000 pounds of paper and 550 pounds of batteries. We are also striving to increase the recycled content in our office supplies. Currently about 34 percent of office supply products include recycled materials.
The dining center in the corporate headquarters introduced compostable dinnerware: plates, bowls and clam shells in 2015. These products, replacing the former petroleum based products, are made of sugar cane and bamboo. Along with the dinnerware, new biodegradable hot cups were also introduced. The new hot cups are endorsed by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).
KFC United Kingdom & Ireland is a signatory of the Hospitality and Food Service Agreement (HaFSA). It is voluntary agreement run by the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) to deliver reductions in food and packaging waste, as well as increasing recycling rates. For 2014 company stores were able to achieve, compared to a 2012 baseline, an increase overall in-store recycling from 22 percent to 65 percent. This progress with reducing waste to landfill resulted in a total 12 percent reduction in CO2e from 69,856 CO2e tonnes to 61,200 CO2e tonnes.
KFC United Kingdom & Ireland achieved its target to recycle at least 80 percent of back-of-house waste by the end of 2015. While excited about meeting the ambitious target, there is the continuing opportunity to address the remaining 20 percent. Therefore, a new waste contractor has been selected who will target sending zero back-of-house waste to landfills by April 2017.
Following a successful test in Scotland in 2015, they are also introducing an optimized waste program to allow, for the first time, all stores to segregate their front-of-house waste streams. This will help divert traditional solid waste from landfill and increase the amount of customer food scraps available for anaerobic digestion. The target for restaurants with segregation of waste streams is to increase total recycling to 47 percent of all waste by April 2017. Training will be important in this effort so will be reinforcing the recycling message by rolling out a national training program to help ensure that company employees are aware of the correct ways of recycling.
As KFC Australia, uniforms get a new look, the ones they’re replacing get a new life. Approximately 60,000 old uniforms were transformed into 25,000 square meters (269,000 square feet) of commercial grade carpet underlayment in 2014.
“It’s incredibly important that we look for ways to repurpose unneeded products from our stores and reduce waste and energy consumption across our entire restaurant network,” said KFC Australia Chief Supply Chain Officer Michael Clark, noting the project presented significant operational and logistical challenges that “forced KFC to really think outside the box.”
To collect uniforms from more than 600 stores across the country, KFC Australia partnered with suppliers to pick up the uniforms during routine deliveries, then send approximately 7,000 kilograms (15,000 pounds) of materials from their distribution centers to Pacific NonWovens, a fiber technology company that handled the repurposing.
KFC Germany, with the assistance of partners, has achieved a remarkable result in its effort to reduce waste on the environment. Approximately 99 percent of all waste that they collect in the restaurant is recycled or recovered according to the results of their latest study. They do this by separating waste into five different streams: paper, food scraps, plastics & metals, residual waste and waste for recovery. This extremely effective system has allowed KFC Germany to save an estimated 7.2 metric tons of raw materials as well as avoiding the generation of 23.8 megawatt hours of energy with an equivalent release of four metric tons of CO2 into the atmosphere.
Pizza Hut U.K. has targeted zero waste to landfill for company-owned restaurants by the end of 2015. Analysis has shown that this can be achieved by diverting 90 percent of generated waste to recycling centers with the remaining 10 percent sent to an energy recovery plant. Full waste separation of waste has been rolled out in Scotland and for company-owned delivery sites in the southeast region of England. For restaurants equipped with fryers, services are being put in place to collect waste oil for removal and conversion into biodiesel. We are committed to working to reduce waste and recycling in the U.K. and have become a Hospitality and Food Service Agreement (HaFSA) signatory with WRAP.
KFC Australia is a pioneer in recycling as it is the first quick service restaurant system to participate in the nationwide recycling initiative, “Do the Right Thing, Use the Right Bin,” a public-private partnership funded by the Australian Packaging Covenant.
To date, new recycling systems for public use have been installed at over 190 KFC restaurants across Australia, providing recycling opportunities to customers. They have had success to date with a total diversion of 102 metric tons of commingled waste from landfill in 2015. They continue to expand customer recycling program in all new stores and refurbished stores.
Of course, recycling in our dining rooms is important but we don’t forget our kitchens. Our KFC Australia restaurants recycle used canola cooking oil. To do this, they work with an accredited third party supplier who collects the oil in the store and transports it to recycling plants to make products such as biodiesel and animal feed. Currently this is occurring in 98 percent of company-owned restaurants and will continue to increase this as the service becomes available.
For the past seven years, KFC Australia has recycled enough used cooking oil to avoid the release of CO2 equivalent to approximately 1,800 homes for one year.
KFC Australia also proudly recycles corrugated cardboard at 98 percent of company-owned stores as well as in the majority of franchise stores. In 2015, they diverted 2,360 metric tons of waste through their cardboard recycling program.
Yum! Brands corporate office and the Brands through the United States are focusing on the three-R strategy of waste recovery: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Office paper, corrugated cardboard, plastic, glass, batteries and aluminum are collected and recycled. In 2015 alone, our corporate headquarters recycled over 106,000 pounds of paper and 550 pounds of batteries. We are also striving to increase the recycled content in our office supplies. Currently about 34 percent of office supply products include recycled materials.
The dining center in the Yum! Brands corporate headquarters introduced compostable dinnerware: plates, bowls and clam shells in 2015. These products, replacing the former petroleum based products, are made of sugar cane and bamboo. Along with the dinnerware, new biodegradable hot cups were also introduced. The new hot cups are endorsed by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).
Equipment to cook chicken is a core component of KFC South Africa’s kitchens, so they are always looking for more efficient and better performing options. New fryers are now being used in all new corporate locations. Not only do these fryers reduce waste oil by 30 percent, they also save energy through improved unit efficiency and increased capacity.
KFC South Africa successfully completed its first environmental audit in 2015 with its largest poultry supplier in the country. The audit was completed at the supplier’s feed mill and processing plant. KFC South Africa plans to conduct more environmental audit pilots with suppliers in its system.
KFC United Kingdom & Ireland awarded its second supplier award for sustainability to recognize the supplier who made the biggest positive environmental impact. The winner was Moy Park for achieving zero waste to landfill status across all 14 of its manufacturing facilities and its agricultural base. In addition to this achievement it has invested in biomass technology within its farming base in the U.K. KFC’s award is not the only recognition that they have received as they were the first U.K. poultry company included in the U.K. Corporate Responsibly Index.
Ian Hyland, Director of Sales-Foodservice, Moy Park, said “We’re delighted that KFC has rewarded Moy Park’s commitment to superior environmental performance with this accolade. Our sustainability agenda focuses not just on the environment, but also customers, suppliers, workplace and the community – similar to the ethos and values of KFC.”
KFC is a founding signatory of the Courtauld Commitment 2025, which has recently launched. It is an ambitious voluntary agrement to cut the amount of resources needed to provide food and drink by one-fifth in ten years. The targeted overall outcomes from 2015 to 2025, calculated as a relative reduction per head of population, are:
At the heart of this ten-year commitment is to identify priorities, develop solutions and implement changes at scale – both within signatory organizations such as KFC and by spreading new best practice across the U.K. KFC will work to deliver these targets and to share best practices.