Sustainability

What is Elon Dining doing to preserve the Earth?

Buying Locally– Elon Dining Services supports local farmers and the community. We have implemented a preferential purchasing system that identifies local produce items and the area from which it originated. We place preference on food grown within our area, state and then region of the country, in that order. Conventional produce from around the world will still be available when an item is not in season locally so you can continue to enjoy all of nature’s bounty. Produce that is locally grown is harvested closest to its peak for a fresher, more flavorful nutrient-filled result. Buying local conserves energy and allows us to contribute to local farms and the economy. Look for locally grown markers to taste the best flavors our area has to offer, celebrate the season selections, and support the local efforts of our community.

We are also a member of the North Carolina 10% Campaign! NC 10% Campaign members pledge to purchase at least 10% of all food locally. Last year, Elon Dining purchased over 12% of the food prepared & served here on campus locally! Learn more about the NC 10% Campaign by visiting www.nc10percent.com.



Composting

All back of the house food waste from McEwen, Colonnades, & Lakeside Dining Halls and front of the house waste from Winter Garden Cafe & Fountain Market is composted. Dining customers can help by using the trash bins at Winter Garden Cafe and Fountain Market identified for composting. Food waste from these dining locations is sent to outside composting companies. During the 2016-2017 academic year, Dining Services composted 301,740 lbs pounds of waste from all participating dining locations. Click here to read an article about the third party company, Brooks Contractor, who collects our compost!

Compostable Take Out Containers and Cups

Take out is green at all residential dining halls. Ask for compostable to-go containers, beverage cups, and soup cups today!

Recycling

Dining Services recycles plastic, paper, cardboard, and aluminum.

Coke Compostable Cups and Straws

All retail locations use the new Coke Compostable and Green Straws cups that are 100% compostable! Please place these in the compost bins located at Winter Garden Café and Fountain Market to increase our composting efforts.

Aluminum Water Bottles

In an effort to offer a more sustainable water option, Dining Services introduced its filtered water program in 2008. In 2009, 123,888 plastic bottles were saved from landfills thanks to your efforts with this program.

Recycled Content Materials

Grab n’ go products, such as cups, straws, and napkins and office paper have post-consumer fibers and support the environment.

Reusable Mug Program

Bring your own mug or water bottle to any campus dining facility and receive your coffee or fountain beverage for only $0.79! That’s a $0.90 savings!

Divert Fryer Oil

Dining Services recycles 100% of its used fryer oil from dining locations that can be used as biodiesel fuel. In the 2016-2017 academic year, we recycled over 2,395 gallons of fryer oil.

Trayless Dining

By eliminating trays in our dining halls, we are able to compost food waste and decrease water and energy consumption.

Recycled Content Hot Cups and Soup Bowls

These feature 10% post consumer fiber, an innovative and food safe material. The cups meet our quality standards and will simultaneously help the environment! Using a 10% post-consumer fiber will help reduce the use of virgin tree fiber by five million pounds in one year alone, the equivalent of 75,000 trees!

Fair Trade Coffee

Fair Trade Coffee is sold at ALL retail locations on campus and Elon Catering. Elon Dining Services recognizes the need for social and environmental responsibility towards farm workers, our customers, and our communities. That is why we have implemented the Fair Trade Coffee program at our We Proudly Brew Starbucks locations, the Eco-Grounds program at the Java City @ KBC, and Port City Java available through Elon Catering. Benefits of these programs for coffee farmers mean community development, health, education, and environmental stewardship.

Bulk Dispensers

Bulk dispensers are used when practical to reduce packaging. Products available in bulk include juices, sodas, milk, ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, BBQ sauce, and most cereals.

Recyclemania and Earth Month

Dining Services participates in Recyclemania, a 10-week annual competition among colleges and universities nationwide, and supports and hosts Earth Month Events on campus to spread awareness and environmental responsibility.

Technology

Food management software ensures that Dining Services forecasts accurately to match food production to consumption. Topio’s, Freshii, Biscuitville, Argo Tea, and now all residence halls use electronic menu boards rather than paper menus in an effort to reduce paper consumption and waste.

China, Flatware, and Glasses

We use china, flatware, and glasses in residential campus dining locations that are washed and sanitized for reuse reducing the amount of paper packaging.

Reusable Cleaning Cloths

Sanitized reusable cleaning cloths are used to clean our locations rather than paper products.

Efficient Operations

We implement practices to conserve natural resources and ensure operational efficiency. Fueled by the understanding that our day-to-day actions have an impact, we work closely with our clients to conserve energy and water.

Transportation Management

We ensure our transportation programs reduce fuel usage and emissions. Transportation provides a vital circulation system that enables delivery of the highest quality product and service. With our vehicle fleet of thousands, it’s essential for us to minimize our use of fossil fuels and generation of emissions.