Green Concessions Policy


The Chicago Department of Aviation’s (CDA) Green Concessions Policy is among the first of its kind in the airport industry.

The policy provides concessionaires at O'Hare and Midway Airports with guidance and standards for minimizing waste, enhancing recycling, generating demand for eco-friendly products and providing healthier foods for passengers and employees. All concessionaires must adhere to the Policy’s requirements to:

  • Ban polystyrene foam (Styrofoam) for all disposable consumer packaging
  • Ban all petroleum-based plastic bags, including trash and take-out bags
  • Ban all petroleum-based plastic disposable consumer containers and utensils
  • Source-separate all solid waste refuse into recyclables, compostables, and refuse
  • Procure only green cleaning and hygiene products
  • Increase procurement of sustainable foods to a minimum of 20 percent of total costs
  • Procure recycled content paper for printing uses that has a minimum recycled content of 100%
  • Donate surplus food to the greatest extent allowable by food safety regulations
  • Incorporate Sustainable Airport Manual© (SAM) guidance and achieve a ‘Green Airplane Rating’ under the Concessions and Tenants chapter

CDA staff offers outreach and training for all concessionaires regarding compliance with the policy. The policy serves as an implementation tool to help achieve the CDA’s waste reduction goal of diverting at least 50 percent of waste from landfills.


O'Hare’s Tortas Frontera restaurant won the “Best Fast Food/Quick Service Restaurant” award at the 2012 Moodie Food & Beverage Conference and landed a first place ranking on GQ Magazine’s list of the 10 Best Airport Restaurants in America.'

Click here​ for a copy of the CDA’s Green Concession Policy.