Measuring Environmental Practices

Compass Group partners with FirstCarbon to improve its FOODprint Toolkit.

By 
Lindsey Ramsey, Contributing Editor

Data is a powerful tool, something that managers with Compass Group knew. So they asked the corporate office for an expansion to the company’s FOODprint toolkit, which helps operators track their location’s environmental impact. The toolkit offered best practices to enable operators to lower their environmental impact, but operators wanted to be able to measure their results. So Compass reached out to FirstCarbon Solutions, a provider of environmental sustainability business solutions, to create a web-based software tool to enhance the toolkit.

The toolkit now features dashboards that track different metrics such as waste, water usage and greenhouse gas emissions. Managers can look at data based on 185 options in five areas: menu engineering, kitchen operations, kitchen services, site equipment and facilities. Based on the dashboard’s information, managers are expected to come up with strategies to lower their facilities’ environmental impact.

Marc Zammit, vice president of corporate sustainability initiatives, says the company turned to industry partners to create baselines for the dashboard.

“For the menu aspect, we went to our key suppliers across the country—beef, produce, dairy—and asked them a series of questions about the transportation, packaging and production of each item,” Zammit says. “We then came up with a calculation of the footprint for that specific product. We then mapped the purchasing for that specific café with those calculations to come up with a café-specific carbon footprint.”

For equipment calculations, operators were surveyed about how they use each piece of equipment. Those results were then mapped against algorithms from the Foodservice Technology Center in San Ramon, Calif. For example, for waste the data is a combination of what the operation knows comes in through purchasing, plus what operators report that they are recycling or throwing out.  

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., has replaced a fajita bar in one of its dining halls with a superfoods bar, Tommie Media reports.

Aiming to provide more options for athletes and students with dietary restrictions, the new bar offers diners a choice of protein with a variety of toppings, such as beans, fruit, couscous and quinoa.

The superfoods bar has made a few appearances on campus since it was first tried for the school’s football players last summer.

“Word of mouth is getting out, and every day I get a few more people,” Ryan Carlson, a cook at the...

Sponsored Content
gluten free diet

From Stouffer’s.

A large part of menuing allergen-friendly cuisine is deciding which gluten-free items to serve.

In particular, college dining hall operators must decide whether to make gluten-free items in-house or to order gluten-free items from a manufacturer. Some factors to consider are: the size of the university, the demand for gluten-free options,and the ability to have separate gluten-free storage and workspaces in the university dining hall kitchen.

According to FoodService Director , 77% of college and university operators purchase their gluten-free...

Industry News & Opinion

Reading Hospital in West Reading, Pa., is using robots to help deliver patient meals, BCTV reports.

The eight robots, named TUGs, will be used to transport meals from the hospital’s nutrition services department to patient floors at Reading HealthPlex for Advanced Surgical & Patient Care.

Moving at three miles per hour, the robots will follow preprogrammed routes to the HealthPlex, where room ambassadors will remove room service carts from the TUGs and deliver them to patients. The TUGs will then return to nutrition services with dirty dishes for cleaning.

The...

Industry News & Opinion

Sodexo has partnered with fast casual Blaze Pizza to offer the chain’s signature pizzas, salads, beverages and desserts at select venues served by Sodexo, including colleges and universities.

Bill Lacey, senior vice president of marketing at Sodexo, said that Blaze’s growth in the fast-casual sector drove the partnership. Blaze opened its first unit in 2012 near the University of California at Irvine. Its pizzas are flash fired, cooking in under 180 seconds, according to the chain—a selling point for busy customers.

FSD Resources