Sustainable Dining in Vancouver – CRAFT Beer Market Restaurant and Forage Restaurant – PART I

Serving up a sustainable, energy efficient and eco-friendly future – a story on green leaders in hospitality: CRAFT Beer Market Restaurant + Bar and Forage Restaurant – Vancouver

by Alexander Maurer


Ocean Wise, 100 mile diet, organic produce, powersmart – these are just a few sustainable initiatives we see once in a while in our local dining menus. But is your dining decision really influenced by sustainable and environmentally-friendly restaurant operations? What can the restaurant of the future look like? And how can a food business sustainably improve its bottom line?


CRAFT Beer Market Restaurant + Bar Vancouver:

“Making the world a better place one beer at the time” is the slogan of Vancouver’s CRAFT Beer Market Restaurant + Bar  which moved in to the Olympic Village in 2013. Located in the historic Salt Building, which achieved LEED® CS Gold Certification following renovations in 2010,  CRAFT has implemented a progressive approach to sustainability in all aspects of restaurant operations.

Credit: Craftbreemarket Vancouver

Credit: Craftbreemarket Vancouver


Built in the 1930s, the Salt Building is an iconic landmark located in the Southeast False Creek Neighborhood on 1st Avenue and Manitoba Street in Vancouver. Originally the building was used as a salt refinery; it was later converted to a paper recycling plant. The City eventually took ownership of the properties and in 2007 rehabilitation plans cited the opportunity to integrate heritage conservation with sustainable building practices, with the goal to achieve the stringent LEED® CS Gold standard.  Led by Acton Ostri Architects and Recollective Consulting the building renovation aimed to improve energy efficiency and performance through strategies such as:

  1. Increased insulation of building shell, including energy efficient main floor windows/doors 
  2. Improved envelope airtightness
  3. High efficiency lighting and ventilation
Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Furthermore, the space is part of the Neighborhood Energy Utility system, providing heat and hot water recovered from untreated urban waste water, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by over 50%.

In 2013, Calgary-headquartered CRAFT Beer Market Group completed its conversion of the empty space into a 500-seat restaurant and bar establishment. Additional energy efficiency measures include energy star appliances, water efficient fixtures and high efficiency lighting. Moreover, operating equipment powered by Bullfrog power green electricity reduces the CO 2 emissions by 109 tons, which is equivalent to diverting 39 tons of waste from the landfill.

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver


CRAFT Beer Market is the largest restaurant in Canada to receive LEAF Level 2 certification (Leadership in environmentally accountable food service), providing a benchmark for measuring the environmental sustainability in foodservice. The audit process includes all aspects of the operation including food purchasing, energy use, water use, chemicals and more.

CRAFT Beer Market maintains a program of composting and recycling that prevents thousands of kilograms of garbage from ending up in landfills. Other initiatives include biodegradable take-out containers, napkins and other paper products ( and Dudson plate ware manufactured using 70% fewer emissions compared to other brands.

Front staff wear Levi’s waterless technology jeans , a selection made specifically because the process used to make them saves tens of thousands of gallons of water per year.

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver


 “Think global, support local” is the motto of CRAFT Beer Market. They use regional products whenever possible, supporting the local community and reducing the environmental impact. Some of the local suppliers include: 

Rossdown Farms Abbotsford: Freerun and organic chicken & turkey

BC Fresh Farms Surrey: Vegetables and other produce

Two Rivers Meat North Vancouver : Sustainable meat products

Oceanwise : Ocean friendly seafood choices

– etc.

Created by CRAFT Beer Market corporate Chef Paul McGreevy , the “New North American Classic Cuisine” menu features fresh, local food that is prepared in-house on a daily basis.

 “As a Chef, I believe that in order to use the quality ingredients we like to use in our kitchens, we have a responsibility to make sure they are there for future generations to enjoy. Using these organic or naturally-raised food sources only to pollute the planet at the same time with total disregard for the impact it will have seems very contradictory. At CRAFT Beer Market, this mentality and belief is something that we all believe in and it motivates us to try and find new ways to continue and better our eco/green practices. We believe it’s the right thing to do.”

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Credit: Craftbeermarket Vancouver

Bottom line at glance:

  • Reduced overall energy demand by 29% (LEED CS Gold Certificate)
  • Reduced overall energy demand by 37% (incl. district energy)
  • Plateware used manufactured with 70% less carbon emissions compared to typical process
  • Reduced carbon emissions by over 110 tons a year w Bullfrogpower
  • Reduced overall water consumption by ~40%

 If you are interested to learn more about CBM sustainable dining, please visit