Do-gooder environmentalism might sound like a costly luxury when many restaurants are struggling just to stay open, but for three-unit Sweetgreen in the Washington, D.C., area, it’s just part of doing business. And business is growing, the chain’s owners say.

“We knew we wanted to create a restaurant that was young and fresh and trendy, but we also wanted to have more of a soul,” says partner Nicolas Jammet. “So it wasn’t just, ‘Hey, we’re trendy. We have cool chairs and cool lights.’

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