Log In
  • AASHE-STARS

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

Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 58.11
Liaison Jennifer Kleindienst
Submission Date Dec. 1, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Wesleyan University
OP-8: Sustainable Dining

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Michael Strumpf
Bon Appétit Resident District Manager
Campus Dining Service
"---" 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:
Does the institution or its primary dining services contractor source food from a campus garden or farm?:
Yes

A brief description of the program to source food from a campus garden or farm:

Bon Appetit pays a total of 80 hours a week to the farmers of Wesleyan's Long Lane Farm in return for produce harvested. Produce is cooked and used in the kitchens to feed the Wesleyan community.


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:

Students run a local co-op program open to students, faculty, and staff that functions similarly to a CSA, with Bon Appetit assisting with local food sourcing.


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:

Wesleyan's vegan dining program serves entirely organic foods including produce, dry herbs, and rice. This program has been driven by Wesleyan's large population of vegetarian and vegan students. The superior taste and quality of the food, prepared by a chef who is vegan and prepares exclusively vegan foods, attracts vegans and non-vegans alike to try these dishes. Because of these efforts, Wesleyan has named the "Most Vegan-Friendly College" multiple times.


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:

During Fall 2016, Veg Out Tuesdays have taken place every other Tuesday as a pilot in Usdan Marketplace (primary dining hall) and Daniel Family Commons (employee dining hall). Only vegetarian options are served that day; other eateries on campus serve meat on that day.


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:

Bon Appetit hosts an Eat Local Challenge, and a Low Carbon Diet day every year.


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:
---

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:

Dining halls have signage advertising local items, explanation of the post-consumer composting system, vegan and vegetarian options, and table tents that promote sustainability policies and practices.


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:

The Bon Appetit Fellows program provides guidance and resources to students and groups interested in learning more about sustainable food systems.


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:

Kosher and Halal items are available at every meal. There are frequent healthy eating initiatives, including Veg Out (plant protein education) and In Balance (portion control).


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:

Wesleyan has participated in EPA's Food Recovery Challenge for Usdan Dining Hall (accounts for most dining traffic on campus) since 2013 an has won regional achievement certificates annually (2013, 2014, 2015).


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:

Wesleyan's trayless dining program began in 2009 and covers meals at all campus eateries.


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:

Student volunteers through the Food Rescue program collect food that is normally wasted from Pi Cafe, Summerfields and Usdan and take it to Eddy Shelter, an emergency shelter about 5 minutes from campus. Students also organize, prepare and participate in community dinners at the shelter.


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:

Cooking oil is collected by a company that turns it into fuel.


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 food waste is composted in Usdan and Summerfields dining halls and Pi Cafe. Student-run cafe Espwesso and Greek houses Alpha Delt and Psi U compost intermittently. Non-Bon Appetit eateries WesWings and Red and Black do not currently compost. Composting is available in all but two student dorms and is available to all students on a voluntary basis.

From 2012-2016, pre-consumer dining food waste was composted on campus in Earth Tubs. Starting in August 2016, pre-consumer dining food waste will be composted off-site. Residential food waste will continue to be composted in Earth Tubs.


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:

All post consumer food scraps (vegetables, fruit, dairy, meat, eggs, poultry, bones, napkins, tea bags, and coffee grounds/filters) from Usdan and Summerfields dining halls, as well as catering operations, are composted at an aerobic composting facility in Ellington, CT.


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:

Reusable service ware is available for all dine-in meals. Napkins, straws, toothpicks, and coffee stirrers are the only non-reusable items used in dining halls.


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:

Bon Appetit's Eco to Go Program is available at Usdan and Summerfields dining halls. Since 2014, all incoming students have received free Eco to Go containers in their welcome packets. Others who wish to join the program pay a one-time $5 fee to buy-in. Participants get an Eco-to-Go key chain when they sign up; this key chain can get swapped for a reusable container after a meal. When students bring back containers to be washed by Bon Appetit staff, they have the opportunity to get a new container or a key chain to use at their next next visit.

Beginning in Fall 2016, only Eco to Go containers are available for take-out at Summerfields dining hall, resulting in the elimination of disposable plastic to-go containers. Use at Usdan dining hall has increased significantly this semester, even though disposable containers are still available (65 cent fee for disposable).


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:

Bon Appetit operates a reusable mug program, which gives students and employees a 10 cent discount on a cup of coffee at Pi Cafe and Usdan Cafe. Pi Cafe has a Coffee Club program to encourage reusable containers.


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:
---

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.