Restaurant Industry Following the LEED of Pizza Fusion's 'Green' Initiatives

With the recent announcement of Subway's® Eco-Stores, Pizza Fusion's™ established approach to environmentally friendly dining receives industry validation

December 03, 2007 // Franchising.com // Fort Lauderdale, Fla., – Pizza Fusion, America's greenest restaurant, has a new found sense of accomplishment as the restaurant industry begins to show signs of change toward a more environmentally friendly future. With over 55 franchises already sold in seven states since the launch of their franchise program in February of this year, entrepreneurs and consumers alike are quickly embracing the company's distinctive and socially responsible approach to business. Setting itself apart from other franchise operations, Pizza Fusion requires all franchisees to uphold their industry-leading 'green' initiatives at inception, applying the highest environmentally sustainable standards to restaurant build-out, design, operations, delivery, menu items and community outreach.

Pizza Fusion is opening Florida's first LEED certified restaurant in January of 08. In May, Pizza Fusion adopted The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Building Rating System™ into their business model, requiring all franchisees to not only have green "eco-stores," but to build only LEED certified restaurants, as a means of reducing the carbon footprint of their stores. LEED is the nationally accepted and most stringent benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. Additional Pizza Fusion locations are slated to open in early 2008 in Pennsylvania, Georgia, and New Jersey, which will mark the debut of the first LEED certified restaurants in those states as well.

"Owning a business that's doing its part to contribute to society is not only important to me personally, but it's rewarding on a number of levels," Jeffrey Yagoda, co-owner of the Fort Lauderdale Pizza Fusion and area developer for Miami, explains. "Our communities appreciate us for taking the initiative to do what's good for the environment and for providing a quality, organic menu that they can rely on as a healthier alternative to the tainted fast food venues on every corner. It's this type of praise we get from our customers that makes me feel proud of what I'm doing."

Grist Magazine recently recognized the visionary efforts of Michael Gordon and Vaughan Lazar, co-founders of Pizza Fusion, in their '15 Green Business Founders' list. The two appeared in the #8 list spot alongside such entrepreneurs as Yvon Chouinard of Patagonia, Nell Newman of Newman's Own Organics, and John Mackey of Whole Foods Market. With the recent launch of Subway's Eco-Store in Florida and the announcement of their plans to pursue voluntary LEED certification, Pizza Fusion's innovative environmental initiatives as a young restaurant franchise have moved an established brand to positive action in support of the Pizza Fusion vision.

"Pizza Fusion opened its Florida flagship store in 2006 with the vision to influence the restaurant industry to move toward eco-friendly practices," Randy Romano, executive vice president of Pizza Fusion, explains. "As a result, we were flattered to discuss the environmentally sustainable initiatives already incorporated into our franchise model with some of Subway's largest area developers earlier this year. To see them emulate the practices we already have in play certainly underscores the value and necessity of sustainability in the restaurant sector."

About Pizza Fusion

Founded in February of 2006, Pizza Fusion leads a new niche market by combining an eclectic organic menu with a detail-oriented environmental business approach in chic LEED certified fast casual environments. Pizza Fusion serves gourmet pizzas, focaccia sandwiches, salads, desserts, beers, wines and more in their purest form - untainted by artificial additives, such as sweeteners, pesticides, preservatives, antibiotics and hormones.

Pizza Fusion is a registered trademark of Pizza Fusion Holdings. Subway is a registered trademark of Subway Corporation.

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