We planned and hosted a dinner with Dearborn to illuminate issues of food waste in Singapore, and donated funds to the Food Bank. We have held two climate conversations to date where we invite members of the public to the restaurant to speak with certified facilitators about what exactly climate change is and what we can all do in order to live with the information. OFC is seeking to be a blueprint restaurant for financial success and environmental responsibility. We also became a founding member of the F&B sustainability council last year, which is a huge step towards making the industry aware of the disastrous practices writ large that are maintained in the name of a good meal.
Staff - Our staff are aware of all our initiatives and drives. It’s an area of focus that has been somewhat challenging for us because of varying levels of interest among staff and levels of understanding the scale of the problem. Most of our junior management is engaged in helping us achieve the goals we set out, but for sectional staff we focus their attention on targets within their reach. For example, pastry is trying to develop perfect meringues with no white sugar, or our meat cooks will be responsible for trying a variety of cooking techniques on a new cut of a sustainable meat and present to the team. Everyone spends a few shifts in the garden learning about plants and growing and everyone forages for ingredients for their own section.
Management – Again, our goal for 2020 was local farm network & sustainable protein sources(check!) 2021 white sugar elimination and launching the farm. Every year we’re here we’ll continue to build upon the legacy and instill the next year with even more purpose. Eventually getting organic certification would be a huge hurdle to overcome.
Customers – We don’t encourage preaching within the setting of the staff-client relationship. For us, hospitality involves reading the table and responding accordingly. We are very happy to inform guests who want to know more about our practices and goals, but don’t want to become condescending or force narratives on tables who are just out on a nice date or an evening with friends. When we do events in the name of sustainability we always provide clients with information because they are attending with that expectation.
Wider community – I have to mention the climate conversations here. Also our garden volunteer program which brings anyone and everyone into the fold to learn about planting and tending a permaculture operation with our uber-talented gardener Zhul.
Key stakeholders – I suppose in a broad context you could say everybody. But we don’t really gain much from the level of sustainability goals we are trying to achieve outside from our own satisfaction at knowing we are trying our best and achieving what we can when we can.
Suppliers and the supply chain (procurement) – We are always trying to work with anyone interested in doing well. It’s not enough to only work with certified bodies or people with a good track record because that simply doesn’t bring new people into the fold of thinking responsibly. We are very concerned with supporting local growers and enabling them the financial flexibility to make their operation more environmentally friendly. It’s all about developing relationships and dialogues in which your pursuit is the betterment of the local business ecosystem. Sometimes it pans out, sometimes it doesn’t, but you have to try otherwise you are simply discouraging small businesses from acting responsibly.