Schott Dining Hall hopes to reduce students’ food waste

February 25th, 2010

Aramark, John Carroll University’s dining service, has updated its waste management this semester.

The use of Rosby Resource Recycling, a food waste recycling service, has aided in Aramark’s improvement.

The program provides containers to fill with waste, which they pick-up and compost into organic products.

Rosby accepts items such as produce, meat, dairy, cardboard and paper towels and napkins.

Junior Ali Frantz said, “I am happy to see we are using a different service this semester that is more conscious about what they do with the food waste.”

According to Tyson Dubay, director of dining services, much of the dining hall’s waste comes from students who take more food than they can eat.

“Almost 2,000 pounds of food a week are picked up,” said Dubay. “About 90 percent of the waste is coming from plate scraps.”

Aramark is working with student organizations during Hunger Week and Earth Week this semester to promote decreasing students’ waste.

The dining hall will have educational displays with clear bins exposing the total amount of food scraps collected by students.

Junior MP Bagnowski said, “I am sure once I see those bins full of waste it will change my habits and a lot of other students.”

Not all food is lost to waste, however.

Aramark donates usable food to Catholic Workers Charity every Wednesday.

Dubay estimates that food for 90 people is provided to charity on average. Typically dry goods, fruits and vegetables are donated.

A small amount of food is also reused. Dubay estimates that the amount reused is around 5 percent.  These items are reused in soups and casseroles.

After eating in the Dining Hall for four years senior Matt Collins said, “[The dining hall] has made a ton of improvements with food quality, renovations and the biggest change is no trays. We are definitely throwing away less since my freshman year.”

Dubay acknowledges that the dining hall can still improve its waste management.

“Our goal is to waste less food and be more efficient – with student awareness we can reach that goal,” said Dubay.