Green Lunchrooms

University Cafeterias Show How to Cut Waste

Dozens of universities are doing away with lunch trays as a keystone in cutting cafeteria waste. A recent survey of 25 schools by Aramark, a food-service provider for some 600 institutions of higher education, found that trayless dining reduced food waste by an average of 25 to 30 percent per person. Seventy-five percent of the 92,000 students surveyed at 300 colleges said they were in favor of the change. Accompanying changes typically include the recycling and composting of food waste and using eco-friendly serviceware.

A separate study by the University of Illinois, which serves 1,300 students a day, noticed a 40 percent reduction in food waste. Kristen Ruby, an assistant director, explains that because students couldn’t carry as much, they didn’t take more than they could eat. “Not having trays [also] saves 516 gallons of water a day,” says Ruby, who counts the consequent dishwashing detergent saved in an academic year at 473 pounds less.

The same principles apply to food operations in businesses, convention centers, sports arenas, entertainment venues, government agencies, correctional institutions and assisted living facilities.

Source: The Christian Science Monitor

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Recycling IQ

Is this item trash, garbage or recyclable? As important as recycling is, it can sometimes be confusing. A short quiz offers answers to help sort out discards.

Bottle Buyback

To increase recycling and reduce trash, Britain is considering charging a deposit fee for plastic bottles, an approach that worked in Denmark and South Australia.

Recycling Crusade

Recycling efforts are being expanded and technologically updated in cities that include San Francisco, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.

Erase E-Waste

Instead of trashing or trading in old smartphones and other electronics, you can donate them to worthy causes that either give them away or recycle them.

Bright Idea

MIT scientists have found a way of recycling the energy within incandescent light bulbs, aiming to make them even more efficient than compact fluorescent bulbs.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags