The Environmental Action Organization (EAO) and other organizations have worked with Dining Services on a variety of initiatives in support of sustainable food systems. Below is a list, provided by Cindy Atkins, Director Dining and Conference Services:
Trayless Service: allows Dana Dining Hall to reduce food waste and water use. Our office of Sustainability calculated that trayless service annually reduces food waste by 23 tons and saves more than 100,000 gallons of water per year.
Local Foods: Dining Services works in partnership with several local business to provide local foods on our menus. Some of our local products include maple syrup, milk, apples and apple cider, spring water and local produce in season. The Northstar Café serves locally produced bakery items, sushi, and other items.
Fair Trade Coffee: Our organic and fair trade coffees are purchased in New England.
Bio-Degradable Products: Dining Services provides patrons with bio-degradable products including: napkins, plates, and containers.
Recycling Cooking Oil: Used cooking oil is filtered and then used to help fuel the Central Heating Plant
Reusable Container Discounts: We reward eco-conscious customers who opt to use reusable containers (e.g. coffee mugs) by providing them with a discount at the Café. Dana Dining Center has reusable take out containers for those who choose to take their meal out. This is an exchange program: pay for the first container, bring it back and receive a clean one or a token for another container later one.
Energy Saving Practices: Dana features timer controlled exhaust fans and a controlled lighting policy to ensure that energy is being conserved whenever possible.
Seed to Table Program: This is operated at the SLU Sustainability Farm. Each fall Dining Services purchases a variety of produce harvested on the Farm to serve in Dana Dining Center.
Seafood: Only seafood listed on the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch Consumer’s Guide Best Choice or Good Alternative list.