Home / Journal / ‘Ocean Friendly Restaurants’ Launches in SB

Ocean Friendly Restaurants has just launched in Santa Barbara! We are excited to help spread the word and support local businesses that are going above and beyond to protect our ocean and beaches. Ocean Friendly Restaurants is a program of the Surfrider Foundation which helps restaurants minimize their impacts on the ocean by adopting practices that reduce single-use plastic waste, maximize energy efficiency, and conserve water.

By choosing an Ocean Friendly Restaurant, you are supporting a business that has stopped serving polystyrene foam, does not give out plastic bags, only serves straws on request, recycles, and offers reusable cutlery. 

Scroll down & keep reading to learn more about the criteria, see a list of currently certified restaurants, or find out how to get involved…

What does it mean to be an Ocean Friendly Restaurant?

1. No expanded polystyrene use (aka Styrofoam).

2. Proper recycling practices are followed.

3. Only reusable tableware is used for onsite dining, and disposable utensils for takeout food are provided only upon request.

4. No plastic bags offered for takeout or to-go orders.

5. Straws are provided only upon request. 

And must also follow at least two of these criteria: 

6. No beverages sold in plastic bottles.

7. Discount is offered for customers with reusable cup, mug, bag, etc.

8. Vegetarian/vegan food options are offered on a regular basis

9. All seafood must be a ‘Best Choice’ or ‘Good Alternative’ as defined by Seafood Watch or certified as sustainable.

10. Water conservation efforts, such as low-flow faucets and toilets, are implemented.

11. Energy efficiency efforts such as LED lighting and Energy Star appliances, are in place. 

Where can I find an Ocean Friendly Restaurant? 

There are currently 12 Ocean Friendly Restaurants in Santa Barbara County, with more joining all the time! Check this website for the latest list.

How can I get involved? 

  • Support an Ocean Friendly Restaurant near you and let them know you appreciate them going above and beyond to protect our ocean, waves, and  beaches.

  • Recommend your favorite restaurant to become ocean friendly. Share your restaurant ideas with Surfrider via Facebook and Instagram.

  • If you are a restaurant owner or manager, email ofr@santabarbara.surfrider.org for more information on how to join the growing community of Ocean Friendly Restaurants.

  • Volunteer with Santa Barbara Surfrider! They are looking for volunteers to help out as restaurant ambassadors, event planners, and social media gurus. Email ofr@santabarbara.surfrider.org for more information.

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