Illinois Foam Ban: A Game Changer for the Restaurant Industry

Heads up: the landscape of the Illinois restaurant industry may soon see a significant shift. A proposed law, currently under consideration in the Illinois Senate, aims to prohibit the use of plastic foam containers and utensils starting as early as 2024 for restaurants, and 2025 for certain other establishments such as food pantries, soup kitchens, and not-for-profit organizations. This proposal, if passed, is designed to reduce plastic waste and promote a more sustainable environment.

While the law has not yet been enacted, it has passed in the Illinois House of Representatives. Sunshine Supply encourages the restaurants and distributors in our network to plan ahead and begin phasing out foam (Styrofoam) containers and utensils.

Landmark Move: Illinois House of Representatives Advances Legislation to Ban Single-Use Polystyrene Foam Foodware

In a significant step towards mitigating plastic pollution, the Illinois House of Representatives has given the green light to a bill proposing the elimination of single-use polystyrene foam foodware. This initiative, slated to commence in January 2024, aims to reduce the staggering 20 million pounds of plastic debris that pollutes the Great Lakes each year.

The impending ban on foam foodware is expected to bolster recycling efforts and significantly cut down contamination within the waste stream. The legislation has garnered widespread support, with a coalition of over 35 organizations backing the move.

This bill, known as Illinois House Bill 2376, is accompanied by a similar proposal in the Illinois Senate. However, it is important to note that the bill is not law yet. As of the last update, after being engrossed on March 21, 2023, it was re-referred to the Senate Assignments Committee on May 5, 2023.

Given the dynamic nature of legislative proceedings, this information could change. Therefore, for the most current status of the bill, we recommend monitoring its progress through official legislative tracking services.

Understanding the Implications of Illinois House Bill 2376

The implications of this Styrofoam ban extend beyond just the restaurant industry. Wholesale retailers, manufacturers, and even consumers will feel the ripple effects of this change. For restaurants, this means altering supply chains and rethinking packaging strategies. For manufacturers like Sunshine Supply, it means innovating and adapting to meet the new needs of our customers.

  • Restaurants: With the impending ban, restaurants need to source alternatives to plastic foam containers and utensils. This change could involve higher costs, at least in the short term, as eco-friendly options often come with a higher price tag.
  • Wholesale Retailers: Retailers who supply restaurants with these items will need to adjust their inventories, phasing out foam products and bringing in more sustainable options.
  • Consumers: The general public will also need to adjust to this change. They may need to pay slightly more for their take-out meals, but they can take comfort in knowing that their choices are better for the environment.

The Role of Sunshine Supply: Foam-Free Restaurant Containers

With these changes on the horizon, we at Sunshine Supply understand that our role as a manufacturer and wholesaler of BPA-free reusable and recyclable plastic food containers is more important than ever. We’re set to navigate these changes, ready to cater to the new needs of our customers.

Our manufacturing processes already align with this ban’s parameters, producing BPA-free, recyclable plastic food containers. In the face of these legislative changes, we pledge to continue serving our customers with our plastic products while maintaining the quality and dedication they’ve come to expect from us. We’re here to lend support during this transition, making it as smooth as possible.

Choose Sunshine Supply for your restaurant packaging needs, and let’s make a positive change together. Contact us today.

Trends in Reusable Plastic for Restaurants: Sustainability Meets Dining

In the past decade, sustainability has transitioned from a trending buzzword to an integral component of businesses across industries. The restaurant industry is no exception. With an increasing awareness of their environmental footprint, more and more restaurants are embracing sustainable measures—with a notable emphasis on reusable plastics.

Making Strides Towards Sustainability in Restaurants

Prominent players in the food industry have begun implementing innovative initiatives to reduce single-use plastic waste. One such example is Just Salad, a leading US-based fast-casual chain known for its healthy offerings. In a groundbreaking move, Just Salad introduced reusable bowls for customers on pick-up orders or deliveries. This initiative encourages customers to participate actively in contributing towards reducing plastic waste.

A similar approach can be seen with Starbucks, the global coffee giant. It offers beverages in reusable cups, incentivizing customers with discounts when they bring the cup back for refill.

Embracing Change: Stakeholder Acceptance and Impact of Reusable Plastics

These innovative changes have been widely embraced by customers who are increasingly conscious about their ecological impact. Not only do these reusable plastic options align with their environmental values, but they also offer tangible benefits like cost savings and loyalty rewards.

For restaurants too, this shift towards reusability has proven worthwhile. Besides enhancing brand identity and customer loyalty, these initiatives help cut down on operational costs related to disposable packaging.

Sunshine Supply: Promoting Reusability & Recyclability

While not identical to the above use-cases, Sunshine Supply’s approach to sustainability resonates with this broader trend. We provide restaurants with high-quality plastic containers that customers can enjoy for multiple uses and eventual recycling.

All our containers are BPA-free, so you can assure your customers that while they are making an environmentally friendly choice, their health won’t be compromised either. It’s crucial here to underline that while we deeply appreciate and acknowledge the sustainability-focused trends within restaurants like Just Salad or Starbucks, our products have distinct features and capabilities catering to different needs within the restaurant business.

Uses for Reusable Plastic Containers From Restaurants

Reusable plastic restaurant containers come in many forms. Some specialty containers can be made to be sturdier and “permanent,” such as a reusable coffee cup that can be brought back to the restaurant. But the majority of plastic restaurant containers, like the ones we manufacture, are designed to be lightweight. These recyclable containers are used for takeout and delivery food, but are not brought back to the restaurant for refills.

However, your customers can reuse these containers at home, and these lightweight containers have become quite popular due to their multiple uses. Here are several ways you can reuse a plastic restaurant container:

  • Home Organization: You can use the reusable containers to organize small items like buttons, sewing supplies, or crafting materials.
  • Gardening: Reusable restaurant containers can serve as mini greenhouses for starting seeds or as planters for small houseplants.
  • Packing Lunch: You can save money and reduce waste by packing your lunch in these reusable containers.
  • Meal Prepping: BPA-freereusable containers are perfect for storing prepped ingredients or leftovers in the fridge.
  • Freezer Storage: You can use the containers for freezing homemade broths, soups, sauces, and more. Remember to leave some space to account for expansion when liquids freeze!
  • Art Projects: Children can use the restaurant containers as paint trays or to store craft supplies.
  • Travel Containers: Reusable restaurant containers are perfect for storing toiletries or medications when travelling.
  • Giving Away Leftovers/Baked Goods: If you often give away baked goods or send guests home with leftovers, the reusable containers mean you don’t have to worry about getting your dish back.
  • Hardware Storage: The reusable containers are great for sorting screws, bolts, and other small hardware items in your garage.

Our containers are BPA-free and can be used to safely reheat restaurant food in the microwave—but they’re also capable of being used for any of the above purposes!

For Reusable Plastic Containers, Choose Sunshine Supply

At Sunshine Supply, we understand the demanding needs of the restaurant industry. Our reusable plastic containers are designed to enhance your operation’s efficiency while supporting sustainability. Whether it’s for food storage or takeaway meals, our containers offer unparalleled durability and safety. We know that your restaurant’s reputation depends on delivering quality food and service to your customers. That’s why every container we supply is made to withstand rigorous use without compromising on hygiene or aesthetics. Choose Sunshine Supply and let us be a part of your commitment towards creating a greener, more sustainable future for the restaurant industry.

Many businesses are finding different ways to be sustainable and environmentally friendly. At Sunshine Supply, all our products are BPA-free and our containers are created with the intent to be reused and recycled. Visit our website to learn more.

Tips for New Restaurant Owners

Owning a restaurant can be a rewarding venture, but it can also be a daunting task. Don’t freak out, though! You can do it!

As a new restaurant owner, there are several tips you should keep in mind to ensure your business’s success. Here are a few:

1. Create a Business Plan for Your Restaurant

The first and most important step for any new restaurant owner is to create a detailed business plan. This plan should include clear objectives, realistic goals, and a strategy for how to achieve them. A business plan for your new restaurant is essential in helping you stay focused and on track as you begin your venture. It also serves as a blueprint for investors, banks, and other potential partners, so having a comprehensive business plan is essential to starting your restaurant or bar on the right foot.

2. Manage Your Finances and Keep Costs in Check

Managing your finances is another important aspect of running a successful restaurant. You should keep a close eye on your spending and track all expenses, and make sure to budget and forecast for the future. Having a good handle on your finances will help you stay out of debt and make sure your business is running smoothly. One way to reduce costs is to work with a local distributor for important restaurant supplies.

3. Build Strong Relationships with Vendors

Having strong relationships with vendors and suppliers is another tip for a successful restaurant. Establishing a good relationship with your suppliers will help you get the best prices on ingredients and non-food supplies while ensuring that your orders are fulfilled on time and accurately. (Here at Sunshine Supply, we specialize in partnering with restaurants to get them the highest-quality supplies that also make budgets happy!)

4. Stay Up to Date on Trends, Especially Take Out/Home Delivery

Additionally, you should make sure you’re up to date on industry trends, such as attending conferences and other networking events. Taking advantage of the latest technology is also essential. Utilizing digital platforms and other tech solutions can help you streamline your restaurant operations and make sure you’re running an efficient business.

For example, take-out and home delivery of food is still a popular option for customers and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. Make sure your restaurant is capable and ready to support your eat-at-home customers with quality food containers.

5. Plan to Keep Your Restaurant Customers Happy

Finally, creating an inviting atmosphere for customers is paramount. You want to make sure your restaurant is warm and welcoming so that customers will feel comfortable and want to return. Consider the design, layout, and atmosphere of your restaurant and make sure it’s inviting and welcoming to customers. For example, tablecloths are a renewable and cost-effective way to add a touch of class to any restaurant interior.

Make Your Restaurant a Success!

By following these tips and tricks, you can set yourself up for success as a new restaurant owner. Having a solid business plan, managing your finances, establishing relationships with vendors, keeping up to date with industry trends, and creating an inviting atmosphere for customers will ensure that your restaurant is successful. With the right mindset and resources, owning a restaurant can be a rewarding experience and a great way to make a living.

Sunshine Supply may have exactly what you are looking for with restaurant supplies. Visit us online and request a quote today.

OEM: What Is It and How Does It Benefit Restaurants?

OEMs have been around for a while, and their importance in the restaurant industry has grown significantly over the years. As the restaurant industry has become increasingly competitive, restaurants have had to find ways to reduce costs while still providing quality products and services to their customers. OEMs provide an excellent solution to this problem, as they can offer restaurants a reliable source of quality parts and supplies at a reduced cost.  

What Is an OEM? 

OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, and it is a type of business that manufactures parts, supplies, or finished products for other companies for their business operations or to use in their own products. 

For example, an automobile manufacturer may source engine parts from an OEM. In the restaurant business, OEMs can provide restaurants with quality equipment or supplies at a lower cost than if they were to purchase these items directly from the original manufacturer. 

How Can an OEM Save Costs for Restaurants? 

OEMs provide an invaluable service to other businesses, especially those in the food service industry. By providing cost-effective and reliable components or supplies, OEMs can help restaurants keep their overhead costs low while still serving up quality meals to their customers. 

Additionally, by having access to a wider range of parts and custom supplies, restaurants can ensure that they always have the right components and supplies on hand, which can help reduce costly downtime due to faulty equipment or missing inventory. Furthermore, when it comes to equipment, buying from an OEM can also save restaurants money in the long run since they are not paying for expensive repairs and maintenance that would otherwise be necessary. 

Ultimately, OEMs provide restaurants with a great way to save on costs and ensure their customers enjoy high-quality meals. By sourcing quality parts and products from an OEM, restaurants can get the supplies and equipment they need to provide delicious meals at a fraction of the cost.  

Sunshine Supply Company: Your Restaurant OEM for Supplies 

Sunshine Supply Company started out as a small business selling janitorial products to restaurants in 1997. Seeing the problems restaurants were facing with their takeout containers, such as messes from food spillage and poor insulation or condensation, Sunshine decided to invest in a manufacturing company. After buying out all other investors, our team of experienced and knowledgeable professionals took over and started crafting patented products to meet our customers’ needs. 

Today, Sunshine Supply is a leading OEM that creates custom food containers, supplies, and products to help restaurants save money. Sunshine Supply is dedicated to helping restaurants become more efficient and cost-effective. We offer a variety of custom food containers, supplies, and products that are made with the highest-quality materials to help restaurants save time, money, and resources while providing customers with a great dining experience.

At Sunshine Supply, we believe in providing top-notch customer service. We have knowledgeable staff on hand who can answer any questions you may have about our products and services. If you need help deciding which restaurant product is right for your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us! 

Contact us for more information about OEM services for restaurants.