UT recognizes that healthy and sustainable food is not only better for our bodies and the environment, but it strengthens and supports our surrounding community.
Sustainable food options
UT Dining offers vegetarian options for students and promotes the Volunteer Vegetarian Dining Group. You can sign up for their newsletter covering vegetarian news and events on campus on UT Dining’s website.
Energy and water conservation
All UT Dining locations use energy-saving light bulbs. Additionally, staff members are encouraged to always power down computers and lights when not in use. It takes roughly 1.5 gallons of water to wash a dining tray. By eliminating trays from all dining locations, UT is able to conserve a great deal of water as well as time and energy. UT Dining also utilizes electrically converted water technology to clean the floors – using approximately 70 percent less water than conventional scrubbing methods.
UT Recycling has greatly expanded its composting program in recent years. Coffee grounds and food waste are collected from all dining locations and brought to UT’s composting site. Morrill dining also features post-consumer composting in which students scrape their food scraps into the compost bin before returning their plates and utensils.
In support of waste minimization efforts and the Mug Project, a variety of campus departments and student organizations have given away free reusable water bottles and mugs to encourage students to reduce their waste.
Learn more about these waste minimization programs on UT Recycling’s website.
UT Dining orders local produce whenever possible. Buying local not only gives money back to the local economy but also cuts down on the carbon footprint for each item.
Fair Trade Coffee programs are initiated through the two coffee brands on campus: Starbucks and Java City.
All dining locations use bleach free, 100 percent content recycled napkins and work to purchase Green Seal chemicals.
For more information about UT Dining’s green policy, visit the Make Orange Green section on their website.