Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 69.81
Liaison Kathleen Crawford
Submission Date July 28, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Florida Gulf Coast University
OP-8: Sustainable Dining

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Ashley Farquhar
Sustainability Manager
FGCU Campus Dining/ Chartwells
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor have a published sustainable dining policy?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainable dining policy:

The following Key Performance Indicators are annually measured by a Florida Gulf Coast University's Business Operations Department to ensure our dining service contractor is meeting sustainability policies:
1) 60% of all foods are fresh (made on site from whole products) This pertains to Resident Dining and Catering.
2) Participation in the Real Food Challenge (RFC) – 20% of food purchases meet RFC criteria by 2020 and increase by an additional 5% annually thereafter until 60% is achieved.
3) Exceed University goals in relation to the Sustainability, Tracking, Rating & Assessment System (STARS).
4) Data for STARS and sustainability reporting metrics for the FGCU Sustainability Dashboard will be delivered at pre-established intervals (quarterly, biannually, or annually depending on the project needs).
5) All food items will be labeled with nutritional facts and as gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, local, 3rd party certified when needed.
6) All locations will provide no less than one alluring vegetarian and vegan entree per meal.
7) Animal products from Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) and seafood that is not on the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch’s Green List will comprise less than 30% of the institution’s total dining services food purchases.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor source food from a campus garden or farm?:
No

A brief description of the program to source food from a campus garden or farm:
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Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host a farmers market, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery program, and/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:

The dining services holds monthly farmers markets in our Residential Dining Hall that focus on educating guests on the importance of local purchasing, sustainable third party certifications, nutrition, and produce preparation and cooking (collateral example attached). It also provides easy access to fresh produce to an area of campus who's many residents may not have vehicles. For the markets, we partner with the chefs at the Residential Dining Hall to obtain produce as local as possible and we also partnered with a local farm for two of the markets. We took this as an opportunity to introduce nutritious produce to the guests that they may have never heard of or tried before (ex. starfruit and dragon fruit).

Student Government's Director of Sustainability also hosts farmers markets on the Library Lawn. These markets are typically held biweekly during Spring and Fall Semesters. There is one primary produce vendor that purveys a mixture of locally sourced, seasonally-based foods as well as other in-demand items that are from other regions. Other local purveyors include small, local businesses that makes craft products such as candles and tea blends.


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:

Per our contract with the university and our Real Food Campus Commitment, All locations will provide no less than one alluring vegetarian and vegan entree per meal. We have a Vegetarian and Vegan brochure that clearly labels all options on campus. This brochure can be found at many locations and also on our dineoncampus.com/fgcu website. We work with Hampton Creek Foods to replace egg-based mayo with plant-based alternatives in many locations. We also offer Just Dressings from Hampton Creek at our dining hall. We celebrate World Vegan Day in our dining hall and hold other sustainability events/marketing promotions/social media posts throughout the year where we promote vegan offerings and educate the student population on the health and sustainability benefits of the lifestyle (event photos attached). We currently have an A rating with Peta2's Vegan Report Card.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host low impact dining events (e.g. Meatless Mondays)?:
Yes

A brief description of the low impact dining events:

-Weigh the Waste- Dining Services partners with Colloquium (a sustainability focused course) to conduct a post-consumer food waste audit called Weigh the Waste twice a semester. During this event, students from the class collect and weigh all food waste in front of the students with the goal being to lower the food waste during the second audit. Students break out into groups to do their own outreach and education. Many groups focus their projects on the topics of food footprints, composting, and low impact dining education (detailed explanation & photos attached).
-Vegan/Vegetarian Focused Days- We celebrate World Vegan day and World Vegetarian Day. Also, many of our events feature a build-your-own-snack that is vegan friendly (trail mix, energy bites- recipe card in attachments).
-Dietitian Visits - Helps vegan and vegetarian students meet their health goals and better navigate campus to find items that align with their diets.
-National Food Day - a day based around education of sustainability in food (tabling for many different topics: local food-students paint pots and plant their own plants and educate from our on-campus Food Forest | Fair Trade education | nutrition information | prize wheel with many different questions about sustainable food to educate students.
-World Water Day- Laminated articles were on tables in the dining hall for students to read while they ate. This article educates on the water foodprint of food.
- Move-In Block Party- Outside the dining hall students were able to decorate their own 5 gallon bucket with handle to bring back to their dorm to use as a recycling bucket.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor host sustainability-themed meals (e.g. local harvest dinners)?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-themed meals:

- World Vegan Day and World Vegetarian Day- bringing awareness to our station that features mostly vegan and vegetarian options- sampling to promote trials of these options and educate on the environmental benefits of the diets through games and handouts.


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 inform customers about low impact food choices and sustainability practices through labeling and signage in dining halls?:
Yes

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

Through Chartwell's, we label our menu though our Balanced U Program (attached document to explain). There are TVs at almost all of the stations in the dining hall and PIDs for those areas not covered by TVs to easily identify vegan, vegetarian, etc.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor engage in outreach efforts to support learning and research about sustainable food systems?:
Yes

A brief description of the outreach efforts to support learning and research about sustainable food systems:

- Events- We hold many events (and activities at events) throughout the year that support learning of sustainable food systems.
- watermelon planting at Watermelon Blast event teaching the importance of eating in season.
- matching game of EWG's Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen (with pamphlet hand-out) and educating on organic food- Clean 15 items were incorporated on the menu as well as being in season.
- Whole Lotta Grains Day- sampled Barley Quinoa salad and played a matching game with grains that guest may not have heard of. Educated on health benefits of these grains.
- Farmer's Markets- educated on different topics that included eating local and Rainforest Alliance Certified produce.
- Build your own hot chocolate bars with fair trade/organic hot chocolate and information on why fair trade and organic is important.
- Assisting students with class projects- Dining helps with the learning and research conducted by students. In the past there has been projects on food footprints and educating about the environmental impact of vegan and vegetarian diets. There has also been a research project done on the feasibility of an anaerobic digester being built for the dining hall.
- Real Food Challenge Internship- We employ 3 paid interns for the RFC. Our interns work to research and learn about sustainable food systems and how to make the university food systems more sustainable by tracking and measuring food purchases and making switches to increase Real Food purchases.
- Food System Working Group- Born out of the Real Food Challenge, the group is comprised of students, staff, faculty, food service managers, food service workers and relevant local stakeholders. They are responsible for developing and coordinating the implementation of an official real food policy and multi-year action plan for the Real Food Challenge.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor have other sustainability-related initiatives (e.g. health and wellness initiatives, making culturally diverse options available)?:
Yes

A brief description of the other sustainability-related dining initiatives:

- Health and Wellness events (Cholesterol Education Day, National Fruits and Veggies Matter More Day, Health Education Week, Healthy Skin Day, New Year's Resolution Event (promoting reusable cups and vegan and vegetarian options), National Gluten-Free Day, World Health Day, Brain Awareness Day, healthy build-your-own-stations at events (introducing healthy foods like chia seeds and flax that students may never have heard of or tried).
- "Eat Your Greens" monthly newsletter in resident dining hall bathroom stalls- educates on a different sustainability/health and wellness topic each month (in attachments).
- FGCU Campus Food Pantry Donations- Residential Dining Hall donates bread every week and we allow students to donate meal swipes during the Thanksgiving season.


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:

-Waste Not- Waste Not is a program used to minimize the cost and environmental impact of food waste in Compass (Chartwell's Higher Education) accounts. The program is driven by a lead associate and designed to be implemented and executed by the staff to increase engagement and operational efficiency. All trim and production waste is measured and categorized daily at every station before disposal, results are posted, and progress is tracked through the Waste Not computer program. Results are to be discussed weekly and adjustments should be made when needed. Waste is categorized into three different categories: overproduction waste, production waste, and unused/out of date.

Fraser Family Farm Partnership- A chef and professor at the College for Resort and Hospitality Management takes almost all of our pre-consumer food waste (excluding meat) and takes it to the farm he owns to feed his pigs. This eliminates this food waste from going to the landfill.


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:

FGCU Campus Dining is trayless at SoVi Dining Hall. Trayless Dining saves 1/3 to 1/4 gallon of water and 3 ounces of food per customer. Menus at many stations went from pre-served on plates and sitting out under a heat lamp (which produced waste as guests did not want food that wasn't fresh) to made-to-order action stations that made the food in front of you and with ingredients of the guests choice.


Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor donate food that would otherwise go to waste to feed people?:
No

A brief description of the food donation program:
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Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor divert food materials from the landfill, incinerator or sewer for animal feed or industrial uses (e.g. converting cooking oil to fuel, on-site anaerobic digestion)?:
Yes

A brief description of the food materials diversion program:

We partner with the Filtafry system, part of Filta Environmental Kitchen Solutions. Filtafry extends the life of our cooking oil by micro-filtering impurities out of cooking oil, extending its usefulness. Once our cooking oil has come to the end of its life, Filtafry will collect the oil and safely removes it from our site. From there, the oil is purified and the majority made into biodiesel.

Fraser Family Farm Partnership- A chef and professor at the College for Resort and Hospitality Management takes almost all of our pre-consumer food waste (excluding meat) and takes it to the farm he owns to feed his pigs. This eliminates this food waste from going to the landfill. The pounds of waste diverted a week amounts to approximately 1000lbs during the weeks the Dining Hall is in session.


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:

All pre-consumer waste (besides animal products) goes to the Fraser Family Farm to become pig feed. The poundage amounts to approximately 1000lbs a week (16 operating weeks a semester = 16,000 for Fall, 16,000 for Spring= approximately 32,000lbs a year of diverted pre-consumer food waste. Some pre-consumer food waste also goes to instructors and students for projects throughout the year.


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:

When our Weigh the Waste program (explained earlier and there is an attachment further explaining the program) is conducted, the compost collected during the 4 program days a year are taken to our on-campus food forest to be turned into compost. The poundage for the Fall '16 = 79.8lbs. Spring '17 = 74.6lbs. Total = 154.4lbs of food waste was composted in our on-campus food forest.


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:

Students signing up during the Early Meal Membership time frame over the summer receive a free reusable serving ware (a clam shell to-go container). Other students may purchase one for $6 and $1 from each sale is donated to interdepartmental sustainability events on campus in the form of in-kind catering.


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:

Students signing up during the Early Meal Membership time frame over the summer receive a free reusable serving ware (a clam shell to-go container). Other students may purchase one for $6 and $1 from each sale is donated to interdepartmental sustainability events on campus in the form of in-kind catering.


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

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

The campus community can get $1 refills at Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, Einstein's Bagel Bros., Chik-fil-A, and SoVi Dining when using designated retail cups or reusable FGCU Dining Cup.


Has the institution or its primary dining services contractor implemented other materials management initiatives to minimize waste not covered above (e.g. working with vendors and other entities to reduce waste from food packaging)?:
No

A brief description of other dining services materials management initiatives:
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Please see the attached document for further explanation of topics. Also in the document are pictures and collateral from events.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.