EPCs for RestaurantsEnergy use in cafe, restaurant and takeaway buildings

Based on sector, commercial kitchens are one of the highest users of gas, water and electricity in the UK and can leave a large carbon footprint. It is estimated that the total energy consumption of Britain's catering industry is in excess of 21,600 million kWh per year.

In Scotland EPCs for restaurants, takeaways and pubs often produce G rated EPC headline ratings even those built to current new build building regulations.

The cost of energy used in catering operations is considerable. For example, the hotel and catering sector spends around £400 million per year on energy. Energy costs in the non-commercial sector are often not charged to a separate catering account, but are estimated at over £400 million per year. Most of the energy used in food preparation and catering is electricity (60%) with natural gas or oil providing around 40% of energy supplied. Source: Carbon Trust


Ventilation Energy Use in EPCsGood kitchen ventilation is important in creating a safe and comfortable working environment.

Cooking produces heat, smoke and other pollutants which need to be removed and discharged to a safe external location. The kitchen ventilation system is one of the largest single energy users in catering operations, amounting to as much as 11% of overall electricity use, or 6% of total energy consumed. Source: Carbon Trust.

To reduce energy use in restaurant commercia kitchens:

* Ensure ventilation controls are set correctly and reflect demand
* Ensure that kitchen fans are switched off when no cooking is taking place
* Maintain kitchen extract ventilation
* Variable speed drives (VSDs)
* Consider specialised ventilation controls
* Consider heat recovery

Hot water

Given the nature of the industry hot water useage is high in commercial kitchens. The graph below shows the notional use of hot water for restaurants and other property types. DHW is hot water used for cleaning. The graph shows significantly higher DHW notional useage for a restaurant property compared to any other sector.

 Hot water energy use in restaurants



Use catering equipment for cooking meals, not heating customers and staff

* Set appropriate hot water temperatures
* Set appropriate kitchen temperatures. Catering is very labour intensive and catering staff can be extremely active, therefore, a suitable temperature in a kitchen is usually between 16-18ºC.
* Consider local temperature controls especially in kitchens to ensure that as the kitchen fills with heat from cooking activity the amount of heat applied is shut off.


Lighting accounts for more than 10% of the total energy consumption in catering and represents a significant cost to most businesses. Good levels of illumination in kitchens must be maintained for efficient working practices and health and safety requirements, so light must be well distributed to avoid shadow.

The Carbon Trust report a case study of a catering operation cleaned their diffusers and reflectors and replaced all their T8 fluorescent tubes with slimline T5 tubes. This enabled it to reduce the number of lamps used by 25% whilst still achieving the same light output. The capital cost




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