A green composting bin sits next to a conveyor belt.

Food Waste Reduction

Serving thousands of customers daily, uneaten food on college campuses can result in massive amounts of waste.  The issue is being addressed head on at Penn State through such initiatives as:

Various Serving Sizes and Self Serve: Preparing dishes smaller than an average serving size to accomodate a variety of options and allowing customers to take only what will be eaten

Signage: Educating customers about the environmental and social impacts of food waste

Focus groups: Demonstrating proper disposal of leftover food

Waste Audits: Gathering and analyzing food waste statistics to understand affectiveness of other initiatives

Composting stations in each dining common also aid in the reduction of food waste.  Customers separate compostable food from other waste before dishes are cleaned.  Penn State then composts all food waste by sending it to a composting facility.  The composted materials are then returned to the University grounds through landscaping soil.