Surfrider’s Ocean Friendly Restaurant (OFR) program continues to expand in Washington. The OFR program is made possible by restaurants who are taking the extra steps to do what’s right for the world’s oceans. The businesses have each made efforts to eliminate plastics in their supply chains, conserve energy, and reduce waste. In Washington, almost forty restaurants have registered to be an OFR with four chapters currently running active programs.
Plastic pollution is suffocating our ocean and the many animals that call it home. Researchers estimate there are now over 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic in the ocean with the number continuing to grow every day. Chapters like the South Sound, Olympia, Northwest Straits, and Olympic Peninsula have gone to the source of much of what we find during cleanups and have worked collaboratively with local businesses in their community to reduce plastic waste.
With four different chapters running four variations of the program much is different across their communities in approach and partnership but the core requirements and ambitions remain the same. The South Sound for instance has partnered with Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium on the program, sharing resources and communications. The Northwest Straits has begun conversations about plastic policy changes in Bellingham as an extension of the OFR program. Olympia continues to have their Executive Committee meetings at newly registered OFRs and promotes them actively on social media. And the Olympic Peninsula chapter is looking to expand on their platinum registered business, H2O Waterfront Bistro.
To get involved with an OFR program in your community contact your local chapter or WA Field Manager Brice Boland. As we continue to make efforts to reduce plastics in our communities, OFR has proven to be a proactive and community driven effort with a variety of different stakeholders and we are excited to watch it continue to grow in 2019! For a full list of current Ocean Friendly Restaurants, please visit our national website.