International cuisines, local water crisis

Bars and restaurants use different sources of water.
  • How can restaurants, bars and cafes reduce water consumption when Bengaluru is reeling under a major water crisis? Take a cue from some of the cafes and restaurants in the city that are trying to create awareness about water consumption in their customers.

Nando’s at Indiranagar, a new chain of British restaurants, has found an innovative way to encourage consumers to reduce their consumption of water. On entering the restaurant, customers can identify numerous vending machines which actually serve water and beverages. Most of the restaurant works on self service, and so diners are encouraged to walk up to the vending machines and decide how much water or other drinks they would like to consume, with glasses kept near the machines that allow you to carry the water as and when you wish.

According to the manager of the restaurant, Narayan, “This helps customers see how much water they really need since they would have to carry the water to the table by themselves.” This is one of the latest in examples to the sustainable methods practiced by new restaurants in the city, particularly related to the amount of water that is consumed.

 Smaller stalls use transparent methods to conserve water.

Bengaluru is now home to numerous such internationally acclaimed restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes. All of these spaces have been under the radar for their consumption of water and the sources that they use. While new restaurants and cafes use innovative ways to reduce their consumption, and encourage customers to do the same, most restaurants do not keep tabs on their daily or monthly consumption patterns, and seem oblivious to the need for saving water.

Starbucks Coffee in Indiranagar and Koramangala use another unique method of reducing their water intake. While they use only the BWSSB (Bangalore Water Supply and Sewage Board) provisioned water for their needs, they record 70000-80000 litres, which is roughly 14-15 tankers of water, being consumed every month.

To use their water efficiently, the cafes have installed Beverage Pitcher Rinsers or BPRs, which use a lesser amount of water, but more pressure, to rinse and wash cafe equipment. They are efficient sprinklers which are constructed into all of their wash basins. The employees find it much easier than washing utensils under the tap as well.

Older restaurants such as the famous Savoury hotel in Koramangala, uses 2-3 tanks full of water every day, and an additional 150 litres of mineral water depending on consumer requirements. The restaurant follows consumption patterns such as providing each table with a bottle of mineral water before customers request it, and does not see the requirement to consume lesser amounts of water.

None of these restaurants face any problems regarding scarcity of water, and claim not to waste any water. If large scale usage of water is reduced, the strain of scarcity will be visibly lesser in communities that face this problem.