Meaty sandwiches, curly fries and shakes take a lot less energy to prepare, thanks to new energy efficiency technologies and efforts deployed by Arby’s Restaurant Group, who joined the Better Buildings Challenge as one of the program’s first food service partners earlier this year.
Last week Dr. Kathleen Hogan of DOE visited Arby’s flagship store—the most energy efficient Arby’s in the nation—to see some of the energy efficient upgrades first-hand.
When the company launched its Efficiency Matters program in 2012, it discovered inefficiencies and expenses that would be knocked out with equipment upgrades and employee training. Arby’s uses a team effort – from the executive suite to the facilities team to store employees – all are focused on increasing efficiency. Energy efficiency is integrated in every employee training – truly an integral part of how Arby’s is doing business. As a result of their commitments to discovering and implementing energy efficient solutions, the company has achieved the following:
- Improved its energy performance over ten percent from a 2011 baseline—across more than 900 company-owned restaurants and 2.7 million square feet
- Achieved energy performance at 92 percent of its properties—560 properties have achieved improvements greater than 15 percent
- Their flagship restaurant on Howell Mill Road in Atlanta has achieved a 38 percent energy savings, resulting in saving $10,000 in energy costs
DOE, Arby’s leadership and facilities staff walked through the wide range of energy efficiency improvements and upgrades. Even the iconic “A” inside the Arby’s restaurant is lit by LED bulbs. Here are the solutions that resulted in the most energy cost savings:
- Indoor T8/LED lighting retrofit
- Low-oil fryers
- Outdoor LED lighting
- Asset management system retrofit
- Cook-n-hold beef cooking platform
Despite being in one of the most energy-intensive industries, Arby’s Restaurant Group has proven that companies can do extraordinary things when they take charge of where their energy use is coming from, where energy is wasted, and how to implement common sense solutions to save energy and money. As a result of their efforts, they continue to find and install cost-effective improvements year after year.
All in all, it was an eye-opening and inspiring behind-the-scenes tour.
Read DOE’s release and media coverage of the visit here.