Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 77.56
Liaison John Pumilio
Submission Date Oct. 11, 2022

STARS v2.2

Colgate University
OP-8: Sustainable Dining

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 John Pumilio
Director of Sustainability
Sustainability Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host a farmers market, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery program, or urban agriculture project, or support such a program in the local community?:
Yes

A brief description of the farmers market, CSA or urban agriculture project:

Over the summer and in the fall there is a weekly farm stand with produce from the Colgate Community Garden. There is also a "Meet the Farmers" event once a year in which our local producers meet with students and share their goods/ produce.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host a sustainability-themed food outlet on-site, either independently or in partnership with a contractor or retailer?:
No

A brief description of the sustainability-themed food outlet:
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Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor support disadvantaged businesses, social enterprises, and/or local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through its food and beverage purchasing?:
Yes

A brief description of the support for disadvantaged businesses, social enterprises, and/or local SMEs:

Chartwells (Compass Group) is Colgate's food service provider. In 2019, about 28 percent of Chartwells' food spending was on local (within 300 miles of campus) products. Nearly all of the farmer's within central New York and around campus are small to medium-sized enterprises. Specific examples of Chartwelsl's purchases include:

Honey from local apiaries is extracted and sold to campus.

Colgate Dining Services purchases produce from Common Thread Community Farm, located five miles north of campus. Numerous students, faculty, and staff also have shares through Common Thread.

Students who manage the Colgate Community Garden utilize organic farming practices to grow herbs and vegetables to supply Colgate’s dining halls, a campus produce stand, and the local food cupboard.

More information can be found here:
https://www.colgate.edu/about/sustainability/sustainable-food-dining


Estimated percentage of total food and beverage expenditures on products from disadvantaged businesses, social enterprises, and/or local SMEs:
30

Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host low impact dining events or promote plant-forward options?:
Yes

A brief description of the low impact dining events and/or plant-forward options:

Chartwells catering will provide reusable china upon request for a small upcharge. They will also incorporate local and sustainable foods upon request, and provide compostable/ biodegradable plates and "plastic"-wear upon request.

Chartwells also utilizes reusable takeout containers and this program was expanded to the university's main dining hall during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results were a significant reduction in landfill waste attributed to the replacement of one-time-use disposable dinnerware.

Fall Quarantine: 8 Days (2nd week)
August 28 - Sept 4 (2020)
Landfill: 18.99 tons
AVG/Day: 2.37 tons/day

Spring Quarantine: 6 days (2nd week) (2021)
January 27 - Feb 1
Landfill: 9.54 tons
AVG/Day: 1.59 tons/day


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor have a vegan dining program that makes diverse, complete-protein vegan options available to every member of the campus community at every meal?:
Yes

A brief description of the vegan dining program:

During the 2021 spring semester, Colgate's dining services hosted a Root For You all-vegan event in the university's dining halls. One of Colgate's students wrote this article in the Maroon News detailing the event and how it impacted her:
https://thecolgatemaroonnews.com/28008/commentary/unpopular-opinion-a-non-vegans-take-on-vegan-day/

Colgate University’s dining halls distinguish between meat and meatless options in our main dining hall. There are vegan options located within the “Rooted in Good Taste” vegetarian and vegan section; however, there is no signage distinguishing between vegetarian and vegan options. Additionally, vegetarian and vegan sandwiches and wraps are available in all dining locations across campus.

Colgate University’s Made-to-Order Program makes vegan and vegetarian options (sandwiches, pasta, and vegetarian omelets) available to students at our dining locations. Local, vegetarian, and vegan food options are promoted using posters and signs, encouraging students to be a “flexitarian,” eating at least one meatless meal per week. In the future, Colgate plans to implement campus-wide events such as "Meatless Mondays."


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor inform customers about low impact food choices and sustainability practices through labelling and signage in dining halls?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability labelling and signage in dining halls:

Colgate's main dining hall has a large sign displaying the impact of food choices. They also have a map of local foods and often times indicate sustainable and/or local food choices.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor participate in a competition or commitment program and/or use a food waste prevention system to track and improve its food management practices?:
Yes

A brief description of the food recovery competition or commitment program or food waste prevention system:

Starting in the spring semester of 2022, Colgate began implementing the Waste Not Program and actively measures all aspects of dining waste from post-consumer, pre-consumer (over-production), poor quality or overcooked foods, drops and spills, and food safety waste.

Project Clean Plate was, and continues to be, a successful way to build student awareness of consumption and waste regarding food on campus. Overall waste was reduced significantly.

All pre-consumer food scraps on campus, about 35%, are composted. Colgate also uses the LeanPath system to reduce overall food waste generated through the preparation and disposal of food in our kitchens.

Colgate University went trayless dining in 2012. This was the result of a student-led effort where Environmental Studies students researched the economic feasibility and the social and environmental impacts of going trayless in our main dining hall. Our student government association picked up on this and pushed it through with support from Colgate's Dining Services.


Has the institution or its primary dining services contractor implemented trayless dining (in which trays are removed from or not available in dining halls) and/or modified menus/portions to reduce post-consumer food waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the trayless dining or modified menu/portion program:

Since 2012, there have not been trays offered in the campus dining hall.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor donate food that would otherwise go to waste to feed people?:
Yes

A brief description of the food donation program:

Colgate is participating in NYS's Food Donation and Food Recycling Program by working with the Hamilton Food Cupboard and Madison Lane Apartments for lower-income residents to donate access and edible foods. For the first time in 2022, we are tracking food donations and establishing an ongoing program for regular deliveries.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor divert food materials from the landfill, incinerator or sewer for animal feed or industrial uses?:
Yes

A brief description of the food materials diversion program:

To divert food from the landfill, Colgate composts pre-consumer food waste in the main dining hall on campus.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor have a pre-consumer composting program?:
Yes

A brief description of the pre-consumer composting program:

Colgate began composting pre-consumer food scraps in our main dining hall for all meals in 2010. Our Dining Services staff collects the food scraps and our Facilities Department brings the organic material to our on campus composting facility.

In 2022, the program is undergoing a transition and we will be doing all on-campus composting at Colgate's Community Garden.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor have a post-consumer composting program?:
Yes

A brief description of the post-consumer composting program:

A small-scale, post-consumer composting program operates through Colgate's Community Garden.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor utilize reusable service ware for “dine in” meals?:
Yes

A brief description of the reusable service ware program:

All of the dinnerware in the primary dining hall is reusable.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor provide reusable and/or third party certified compostable containers and service ware for “to-go” meals (in conjunction with an on-site composting program)?:
Yes

A brief description of the compostable containers and service ware:

All our take-out locations utilize corn-based compostable packaging and flatware. There is also a reusable option available for students, staff, and faculty.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor offer discounts or other incentives to customers who use reusable containers instead of disposable or compostable containers in “to-go” food service operations?:
Yes

A brief description of the reusable container discount or incentives program:

We offer beverage discounts at the Coop and the library café for those with reusable mugs.


A brief description of other sustainability-related initiatives not covered above:

Colgate University’s Made-to-Order Program helps to minimizes food waste by reducing the amount of “leftovers” that would otherwise be thrown away.

Chartwells implemented "Project Clean Plate” which recorded and publicized the amount of waste our main dining hall produced during the semester, explicitly showing students the impact of their consumption. The program was successful in reducing waste production by about 25 percent during its peak implementation.


Website URL where information about the sustainable dining programs is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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