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The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 85.51
Liaison Jennifer Andrews
Submission Date July 27, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of New Hampshire
IN-27: Innovation D

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Miriam Nelson
Director
Sustainability Institute
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Reducing Red Meat Purchases on Campus to Promote Sustainability and Health

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

Through a series of innovations, UNH Dining Services reduced beef purchases (20%) between 2015 and 2017 to improve the sustainability and health of campus cuisine. The scale of dining operations at UNH, which serves approximately 17,000 meals per day (3,400,000 annually), demonstrates both the difficulty in achieving such a reduction and the significance of UNH Dining’s commitment to continuous improvement in sustainability.

Beginning in 2015, UNH Dining began taking action to reduce red meat purchases, particularly focusing on beef due to its outsized environmental burden and health impacts among protein sources. Numerous strategies have been employed to achieve this objective, including 1) increased seafood offerings; 2) new “blended burgers”; 3) reconfigured burger stations with multiple choices (i.e., veggie, turkey, salmon); 4) portion control; 5) and increased plant-based protein and produce offerings. The impact of these innovations has been substantial, reducing beef purchases by 20% and 16%, on dollar and mass bases, respectively. The carbon footprint of beef purchases was reduced by 310,719 kg CO2-eq., equivalent to removing 66 passenger vehicles from the road for one year. These results will be followed up with a full analysis of UNH Dining’s purchases to quantify the net impact of shifting procurement away from red meat.


Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Air & Climate
Food & Dining
Purchasing

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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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.