Is there a cost to participate in this program?
No, this program is completely FREE. Plus, participating businesses save 10% on their City recycling bills and enjoy additional savings from energy and water conservation.
My business is not a restaurant or food service business. Can I join?
Unfortunately, not at this time. The City anticipates opening the program to other business types in the near future. Want to be notified when this happens? Register here.
Is the City requiring that restaurants “go green” or stop using specific products?
The City is not banning or regulating any specific products at this time. The Green Business Recognition Program is a voluntary program. To become a recognized Green Business, participants must refrain from distributing plastic bags or expanded polystyrene (aka “Styrofoam”) containers for to-go orders, distribute plastic straws only by request, use only reusable or biodegradable* tableware for on-site dining, and implement a few other green actions (See About Green Business for details).
My establishment already implements some of the actions listed, do I get credit for that?
Yes! Your business will get credit for any of the listed items that you are already practicing. Be sure to check the appropriate boxes, and be able to show documentation of these actions when the City representative visits your site.
How do I prove I have completed enough “green” actions and receive my certification?
After you complete the application, the Sustainability Coordinator will contact you to ensure that it is complete, answer any questions, and schedule a site visit at your convenience. At the site visit she will take photos and request documentation of the green actions you indicated on your application. Please be prepared to present relevant documentation (such as receipts and product packaging) during the visit. Once your site visit is complete and City staff confirms that you have met your commitments, you will receive recognition as a City of Boynton Beach Green Business.
Why is the City doing this program?
This program is aimed to assist local restaurants to help create a greener Boynton Beach by meeting our goals of reducing energy and water use, protecting natural ecosystems, and combating climate change. It is also a tool to highlight participating restaurants’ leadership in this movement, so that local residents and tourists can visit your establishment!
Are there other similar local programs?
Yes! In January 2019, the Boynton Beach Chamber of Commerce merged with the Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce. Sustainability staff at the two cities thought it would be helpful to create similar guidelines for green business recognition. As result, Boynton Beach and Boca Raton have the same entry requirements for their green restaurant programs, and will aim to align programs for other business types in the future.
What if I already have certification from an alternative green business program?
If your business has a national certification from Surfrider Ocean Friendly Restaurants, Green Restaurant Association, or a similar program, you will be automatically eligible for the Boynton Beach Green Business Recognition Program provided you meet the prerequisites of this program. Please email the Green Business office or call (561) 742-6494 with questions.
Footnote: * Ensure that any compostable/biodegradable product is 100% plant material (e.g., bagasse/sugarcane fiber, wheat straw, palm leaf, bamboo, uncoated paper). Plastics labeled as compostable or biodegradable typically only break down when composted in a specific type of industrial facility not present in South Florida. For this reason, compostable plastics pose the same hazards as regular plastics and should be avoided.