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Water Disruption: Top 9 Survival Tips For F&B Businesses

Water cuts happen now and then in Malaysia, especially in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur.

It was recently reported that there’ll be water disruptions in the Klang Valley, affecting 577 areas in 3 districts for 3 – 4 days beginning 24 April 2019, due to the shutdown of a water treatment plant for upgrading works by Syabas.

Water disruptions like this greatly affect businesses, especially those that use a lot of water like F&B businesses.

What can you do as a business owner to save water? Check out our top 9 survival tips for F&B outlets:

1. Store enough water

Water outage infographic store water

Prepare by storing enough water once you know when and how long your business will be affected by a water cut. Do a quick audit and determine roughly how much water you’ll need for the duration of the water outage.

Tip: Use large plastic containers that can be stacked on top of each other to store your water. This will help you save space and more water.

Get your storage containers from:

2.Install water-saving devices like thimbles or faucet aerators

Water outage infographic faucet aerator

Water-saving devices can reduce water consumption by up to 70% Datuk Jaseni Maidinsa, CEO of Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP)

We use a lot of water on a daily basis without even realising it.

Here’s a crazy fact: A leaking tap can lose you up to 100 liters of water per day. What?!

So just imagine how much water you’re using just to wash your dishes or flush the toilet.

The answer: A lot.

This is exactly why you should install water-saving devices like thimbles or aerators for your faucets.

They help control the amount of water flowing through your tap without affecting the water pressure. These devices help increase the surface area of the water so that it doesn’t just slip through your fingers and flow down the drain.

Get a water-saving device for your faucet:

3. Use eco-friendly disposable tableware

Water outage infographic-ecofriendly tableware

A lot of water is wasted on washing tableware like cutlery and plates.

The best thing you can do for your F&B business during a water disruption is to use disposable tableware.

Be sure to use eco-friendly options, or at the very least, biodegradable tableware, because you don’t want to harm the environment while doing so, right? 😉

Get eco-friendly tableware from:

4. Serve less of/replace items on the menu that need the most water to prepare

Water outage infographic-food being cooked

F&B businesses use a lot of water in the kitchen.

What you can do when facing water disruptions is to identify the food on your menu that requires a lot of water to cook. For example, pasta and soups.

Once you’ve done this, you can choose to do either of the following during your water cut:

  • Serve less or limited quantities of the food
  • Replace the dish with something that requires less water to cook (e.g.: roast chicken and veg instead of spaghetti bolognese)
  • Remove item from menu temporarily
  • See how you can prepare the food with less or no water at all

Reducing your water footprint in the kitchen really helps you save water, and even cut cost. So let’s start auditing our menu!

5.Close your toilet and direct customers to the nearest available toilet outside

Water outage infographic-close door sign

One toilet flush takes 5 to 15 liters of water.

That’s water that you probably won’t have during a water disruption. The best thing for you to do is to close access to your toilet and only open it for emergency use. Keep pails of water for this use in your toilets.

Tip: Provide good customer service by identifying public toilets closest to your F&B business so you can direct customers there.

6. Close off hand washing area

Water outage infographic-wet wipes and hand sanitiser

During a water disruption, close off your hand washing area and provide wet wipes or hand sanitiser instead.

This way, your customers that want to wash their hands before or after a meal can clean their hands.  

Doing this gives your customers a good impression of your F&B outlet, as it shows your customers that you provide good service no matter what situation you’re in.

A little care goes a long way. 

7. Only serve/sell bottled water

Water outage infographic-bottled water

Our bodies are about 60% water. We need drinking water to survive.

A F&B customer will normally consume about 1 – 2 glasses of water during their visit to your outlet. That’s about 240 ml per glass of water. Multiply that with the average number of customers per given day, and you’ll know how much drinking water you need on hand.

Stock up on water:

Of course, if you don’t have enough budget for this, boil enough water and store it in reusable glass bottles, which you can get from Ikea for about RM6.

8. Reuse water from cooking

Water outage infographic-watering plant

You use a lot of water when cooking food for your F&B business.

So why not reuse the cooking water?

After all, every drop of water is precious during a water cut.  

Here are some liquids you can reuse:

  • water from boiling vegetables – reuse as stock water
  • pasta water – reuse to water plants
  • liquids from canned beans – reuse as substitute for egg whites, or butter (blend with oil)

 By doing this, you can do your part for water conservation.

9. Mop floor with floor cleaning wipes/sheets

Water outage infographic-mopping floor

Keeping your floors clean is important.

But you obviously can’t use a bucket of water to mop the floor during a water disruption, now can you?

That’s okay, for a temporary water cut, keep your store clean with floor cleaning wipes or sheets such as:

Save more water, cut more cost! Good luck! 😉

Do you have any other water-saving tips to share for other F&B business owners out there?

 Share them in the comment section below. 🙂