Part of the Campus Sustainability Plan is committing to reducing environmental impact through every bite taken on campus, whether it is choosing the food we eat, conserving the water and energy needed to cook and clean, or reducing wastes.
Our definitions of sustainable foods include locally-grown, organic, humanely-raised, and fair trade.
We are currently reducing the amount of energy consumption by refrigeration, dishwashers, and other appliances. Reducing hot water use also saves energy. Blackhawk Commons has been outfitted with solar thermal panels to provide hot water using renewable energy.
Solid waste is reduced by decreasing food waste and recycling. Food waste has been reduced since UWO went trayless starting 2010. A pulper in Blackhawk commons squeezes the water from compostable solid waste, making lighter to transports and sending it the university's biodigester where it is converted to methane gas and used to generate electricity.
Dining is also researching and implementing alternative fuels for its vehicles, and purchasing green materials in all dining facilities.
Sustainable food actions include:
- batch cooking to minimize food waste;
- dish washing machines and refuse systems to lower water and energy consumption;
- serving only fair trade coffee in Blackhawk Commons and catering operations; and
- signing a dining services contract that includes policies reflecting four dimensions of sustainable food.
Learn more about our goals for sustainable dining services at UWO in the Campus Sustainability Plan.