Yum China Holdings has announced the launch of KFC’s first Green Pioneer Stores in Hangzhou and Beijing, aiming to further integrate innovative solutions for building net-zero restaurants in the future. The move is part of Yum China’s climate strategy and roadmap towards the ambition of reaching net-zero value chain greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, following the signing and submission of the Business Ambition for 1.5°C Commitment Letter to the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) in 2021.
Guided by Yum China’s 4R (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Replace) Principles, KFC has already integrated energy saving, emissions reduction, plastic reduction, and other environmentally friendly measures in its stores across the country. Green Pioneer Stores utilize advanced low-carbon technologies in their construction and daily operations. Compared with the average GHG emissions of KFC stores in 2020, Green Pioneer Stores are expected to further reduce GHG emissions by approximately 15% per year.
- Renewable Energy/Solar Power: At KFC’s Green Pioneer Store in Hangzhou, solar panels are installed on the roof of the store, generating about 10,000 kWh of solar power every year, reducing carbon emissions from electricity consumption. An advanced Power Storage System is integrated to further improve energy efficiency.
- IoT Based Intelligent Energy Management: An Internet of Things (IoT) based intelligent restaurant energy management system improves the energy efficiency of Green Pioneer Stores, utilizing technologies such as IoT, big data and artificial intelligence (AI) to effectively reduce energy consumption by about 10% per year.
- Natural Lighting: Green Pioneer Stores are equipped with a Tubular Daylighting System to fully utilize natural lighting. This allows customers to enjoy natural light while reducing electricity consumption.
- Solar Energy Powered Outdoor Umbrellas: Solar energy powered outdoor umbrellas are provided for outdoor seating. Using integrated solar panels, the umbrellas generate electricity for nighttime lighting.
- New Environmentally Friendly Materials: Recycled materials, such as ceramic floor tiles manufactured in the process of energy recycling, low-carbon bamboo materials, and leather alternative made from recycled KFC coffee grounds, are applied in the construction and furniture of Green Pioneer Stores. All these recycling initiatives help reduce GHG emissions in the construction and operation of the stores.
Green Pioneer Stores allow customers to experience and learn about environmentally friendly restaurants through “green interior design.” At KFC’s Green Pioneer Store in Beijing, a special Family Bucket located at the store is made entirely of recycled KFC food packaging, showcasing the artistic charm of turning waste into resources. Meanwhile, at KFC’s Green Pioneer Store in Hangzhou, a section of wall has been intentionally left unfinished with an opening to show customers the environmentally friendly construction process, including reducing construction waste by decorating over the store’s existing walls.
Yum China uses multiple channels to promote more sustainable lifestyles and increase customers’ awareness of eco-friendly behavior. A “Virtual Green Store” launched on the KFC Super APP in early April advocates for over 330 million KFC members to join together to promote sustainable lifestyles. It motivates customers toward low-carbon behavior, such as opting out of disposable cutlery and mobile ordering, and engages customers in carbon reduction and eco-friendly activities.
Since 2017, 100% of newly built KFC restaurants in China comply with Yum China’s Green Building Standards, fully considering environmental factors such as environmentally friendly materials, energy saving facilities, indoor air quality and thermal comfort control systems. Meanwhile, energy efficient and low-carbon operations for restaurants have been prioritized to reduce GHG emissions. Yum China has been continuously upgrading equipment and facilities with advanced technologies such as the value-added technology application (VTA) system and IoT to promote the digitization, automation, and intelligence of its stores. To reduce GHG emissions in its logistics and warehousing, Yum China developed the Transportation Management System (TMS) to optimize its national distribution network and route planning, vehicle loading rates and delivery mileage. In addition, Yum China is finding ways to support and cooperate with its supply chain partners to measure, reduce and report on their GHG emissions.