UWaterloo Food Services has been a strong champion of implementing sustainability in their operations. Our food systems have a big impact on organizational sustainability, which is why UWaterloo has implemented the following programming.
UWaterloo Food Services has a pilot program with the Region of Waterloo to have Green Bins in all kitchens. This helps divert food waste from preparation and spoilage that would otherwise go to landfill.
Food Services purchases as much food locally as possible, supporting the regional economy and minimizing the environmental impact from transporting food long distances.
Buy local - Buy fresh! If you're interested in local food in Waterloo Region then check out Foodlink. This is a non-profit organization that supports and connects local farmers, educates the general public, and engages local decision makers on food issues. If you need more info, stop by the Sustainability Office for a map of where to shop local in the Region!
Want to buy great local food? Check out the Farm Market during June and July for a delicious selection of seasonal fresh produce, baked goods, honeys, and more.
Food Services minimizes food packaging waste by:
- Switching all take-out packaging to compostable containers or PET recycleable containers
- Purchasing cafeteria trays made from recycled materials
- Switching to bulk condiments at most eateries
Most paper cups on campus can be put in the appropriate blue bin, but reducing is always more effective than recycling! Food Services has a "Lug-a-Mug" program on all outlets to provide a discount on coffee purchases if you bring your own reusable coffee mug.
Fair Trade certified coffee has been made with the social and ecological principles of fair price and labour conditions, democracy and transparency, community development, and sustainability in mind. Visit the Food Services web site for Fair Trade coffee vendors around campus.
The Waterloo Public Interest Research Group (WPIRG) maintains a community garden next to the greenhouse in north campus, where students and volunteers grow local organic produce. It's a great learning opportunity and fun way to grow your veggies! Visit WPIRG to join.
In 2014, St. Paul's also launched a community garden next to its residence building. St. Paul's food service provider has agreed to purchase the produce at market value, which provides a source of local food in the cafeteria and also helps sustain the gardens financially.
Food Services maintains a garden next to the University Club, where they grow spices and herbs on-site!