We recently encountered an unexpected surprise while dining at a Chick-fil-A in Arizona. Besides the fact that the cups were made of foam, there was a garbage can designated to recycle the foam cups; now that is not something you see every day.
While researching if this fast food chain had participants only at a local level, we quickly discovered the environmental stewardship of the Chick-fil-A brand; their vision, to have a positive impact on the communities they serve and promote a healthy environment for their customers while minimizing environmental impact (chick-fil-a.com). This “journey,” as they call it, includes topics such as packaging, cups, energy and water savings, buildings, and supply chain. Of course those are all key words we care about, but their cups are the topic of discussion we are tipping our hat off to them, even our President David Bolland said, “while we do not service tableware, we support the image and acknowledge Chick-fil-A to be a proponent of the recycling industry; understanding the advantages of foam products as an environmentally friendly product, superior insulator yet unsurpassed functionality.”
According to their website, they are the first restaurant chain in the industry to implement a large scale foam recycling program. Their well-received foam cups are recycled in 100’s of their locations where they are in turn recycled into everyday products such as the insulation and plastic cutlery. They even made this YouTube video (Foam Cup Recycling) earlier this year to display their recycling efforts, we couldn’t have said it better ourselves.