EAT Restaurant Initiative

The Alabama Environmental Council (AEC) would like to invite you to join the Earth Aware Team (EAT)!

What’s EAT about?

Raising awareness around disposable waste in restaurants, bars, and breweries that impact our health, and the health of the planet.

The EAT initiative promotes sustainable practices including the following:

  • Favoring the use of reusable containers over disposable.
  • Reducing landfill waste through composting, recycling, and food rescue organizations.
  • Avoiding disposable containers that leach toxins into our food and ultimately contaminate our soil and water. 

If you’re a bar, brewery, or restaurant you can fill out the EAT Partner Application HERE and we will get you started.

As a consumer you can support restaurants that adopt sustainable practices. Look for the EAT Seal identifying partner restaurants.

If you’re a bar, brewery, or restaurant you can fill out the EAT Partner Application HERE and we will get you started.

LEVEL 1 – No Styrofoam Friend

If your business does not use styrofoam products, you qualify as a Level 1 Partner.

Styrofoam (aka Polystyrene) is toxic and carcinogenic, posing a health risk to humans and poisoning the environment. Styrofoam manufacturing is the fifth largest industrial producer of hazardous waste.

Using only reusable foodware and drink containers like aluminum, glass, and some dishwasher safe plastics for onsite dining greatly reduces single-use waste, — which contributes to litter on roadways, waterways, and can endanger human and ecological health.

When looking for replacement containers, make sure to look for/ask for “PFAS-free” options.

PFAS or Polyfluoroalkyl Substances are man-made chemicals that have been utilized to manufacture a wide variety of packaging and product surfaces that are water and grease resistant. Unfortunately, research conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Center for Disease Control (CDC), American Chemical Society (ACS), and Nature, have shown these chemicals are toxic and carcinogenic.

These chemicals leach out of the containers and into our food causing numerous health issues. PFAS chemicals have been dubbed “forever chemicals”, because they are extremely persistent, lasting thousands of years.

Every American tested has PFAS in their blood; the greater the level of exposure, the greater the risk of related health issues such as infertility, autoimmune diseases and cancer.

LEVEL 2 – Silver Sustainable Partner

If you meet the criteria for Level 1, and you COMPOST or DONATE leftover food, you qualify as a SILVER Level Partner.

  • Food waste in landfills contributes methane emissions to our atmosphere and to global warming.
  • When food waste is kept out of landfills by composting, it provides valuable nutrients to your garden, and/or farms.
  • Donating food to a food rescue or pantry organization helps provide essential services to our neighbors in need!

IF COMPOSTING IS NOT AN OPTION (Choose 3 of the following sustainable practices)

  • Buy local, organic produce and humanely raised animals when possible (at least 5% of COGS is from local suppliers)
  • Offer plant-based proteins
  • Donate leftovers > Contact FEEDBHM  or Magic City Harvest 
  • No beverages sold in plastic bottles
  • Advertise that you will refill water bottles 
  • Accept personal containers for take-out

LEVEL 3 – Gold Sustainable Partner

Polyfluoroalkyl substances known as PFAS, have been shown to migrate out of foodware, and into our foods and drinks — they are toxic!

PFAS is most prevalent in molded fiber foodware. Typically, it does not contain a visible liner. Instead, fluorinated compounds are often mixed into the molded fiber slurry. This imparts grease and water resistance to the foodware product.


Look for BPI Certification >>

All products that are BPI Certified are free of intentionally added PFAS, and have a total fluorine limit of 100 ppm. They are also compostable!

If you need assistance in finding alternative products do not hesitate to contact us. We have resources that can help.

Email Lauren at [email protected]

Restaurant Partners

Partner Organizations

Municipal Partners

Scroll to Top