Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 60.83
Liaison Parker Long
Submission Date March 2, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Virginia Commonwealth University
OP-7: Food and Beverage Purchasing

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.11 / 6.00 Joseph Costa
Sustainability Projects and Program Coordinator
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Percentage of dining services food and beverage expenditures on products that are third party verified under one or more recognized food and beverage sustainability standards or Local & Community-Based:

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (expenditures on conventional animal products)? (If data is not available, respond “No”):

Percentage of total dining services food and beverage expenditures on conventional animal products (meat, poultry, fish/seafood, eggs, and dairy products that do NOT qualify in either the Third Party Verified or Local & Community-Based category):

A brief description of the sustainable food and beverage purchasing program, including how the sustainability impacts of products in specific categories are addressed (e.g. meat, poultry, fish/seafood, eggs, dairy, produce, tea/coffee):

Both Aramark and VCU are committed to sustainable dining and are constantly looking to improve, and decrease our environmental impact. Additional information on the commitment of dining services is below, additional information on Aramark's commitment to sustainability can be found here-http://www.aramark.com/about-us/corporate-responsibility/environmental-sustainability

VCU Dining Services is committed to increasing our use of local items in our retail locations and reducing our environmental “foodprint.” We will offer organic coffee and food options. We will also introduce our reusable mug and bag programs at every location with a Going Green Day where customers receive a discount when using these items.
• We will continue to source and offer Fair Trade products in our coffee locations and convenience stores.
• We will continue to recycle 100 percent of our fryer oil waste.
• We will continue to feature Green and Blue Cleaning products in our operations.
• We will continue to be 100 percent trayless in all dining locations to help reduce food waste.
• We will continue to advocate recycling and waste management in all locations.
• We will continue to promote sustainable practice menu items complete with product mix solutions, promotional materials, and packaging and pricing solutions highlighting local menu items.
• We will continue to participate in RecycleMania, Earth Day, and other cause-related events.
• We will continue to promote Waste Week, focusing on encouraging students to reduce the amount of food that is wasted. For every pound of waste reduced, ARAMARK donates a pound of food the Central Virginia Food Bank.
• We will continue to promote the VCU Reusable Mug program, which offers discounts to customers who use reusable beverage containers.
• We use 100 percent biodegradable and compostable packaging, cups, and trash liners in each of our proprietary brand locations.
• Use biodegradable prepackaged food when available.
• Use wrapper-free straws and disposable silverware when practical and sanitary.
• Continued engagement with our local farming community partners.
• We will continue to look for community partnerships that will provide exposure for the Virginia Commonwealth University’s sustainability program.
• Continue to use solar compactor at Shafer Court Dining Center. Compaction of the deposited trash increases capacity and reduces the frequency of weekly trash collection trips by up to 80 percent, thus saving on labor, fuel, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

An inventory of the institution’s sustainable food and beverage purchases that includes for each product: the description/type; label, brand or producer; and the category in which it is being counted and/or a description of its sustainability attribute(s):
A brief description of the methodology used to conduct the inventory, including the timeframe and how representative samples accounted for seasonal variation (if applicable):

Data is for calendar year 2017. Aramark serves as VCU's primary food service provider. They provided a detailed food inventory for the purpose of this report. Aramark strives to purchase, when possible, local, fresh produce. Aramark tracks their sustainable food and beverages purchased, through their own proprietary tracking system. The original location of the food item, is how the location is determined.

Percentage of total dining services expenditures on Real Food A (0-100):

Percentage of total dining services expenditures on Real Food B (0-100):

Which of the following food service providers are present on campus and included in the total food and beverage expenditure figures?:
Present? Included?
Dining operations and catering services operated by the institution Yes Yes
Dining operations and catering services operated by a contractor Yes Yes
Student-run food/catering services No No
Franchises (e.g. national or global brands) No No
Convenience stores No No
Vending services No No
Concessions No No

A brief description of purchased food and beverage products that have other sustainability attributes not recognized above :

Many of the foods in the inventory are Third party verified, but not via the verification systems STARS accepts. See inventory above for other third-party verifications.

Additional percentage of dining services food and beverage expenditures on conventional products with other sustainability attributes not recognized above (0-100) :

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

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.