Rewards for successful sustainability

GEEA logo

Even the governor of the state of Virginia is impressed. Due to its continued commitment to sustainability and implementations of environmental initiatives, the dining services program at Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg, received the bronze rating of the 2014 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award earlier this year.

“I think what’s been really great,” shares Rial Tombes, sustainability coordinator at Virginia Tech, “is it’s the first real award or any kind of recognition that dining services has gotten for sustainability. Virginia Tech as a whole has gotten a few awards … but this is the first dining-specific recognition, and I think that that is a really good thing to be able to say.”

Presented by the Environmental Virginia Symposium during its 25th anniversary event held at Virginia Military Institute, in Lexington, winners of the award have made sustainability an integral part of their organizational culture through leadership, innovation and continual improvement, according to the governor’s website. By way of an application process, organizations that have demonstrated a culture of environmental sustainability, reduction in their environmental footprint and a commitment to future sustainability-orientated actions are chosen for gold, silver and bronze categories for sustainability and land conservation.

The dining services team has prioritized sustainability, incorporating initiatives such as the Reusable To-Go Container Program (see April 2014 issue); the Farms to Fields Project market concept in the campus’s Owens Food Court, which offers sustainable, organic and local food options for students throughout the school year; and partnering with the University’s college of agriculture and life sciences to bring milk from the university dairy and produce from the school’s research facility at Kentland Farm into the dining program.

Moving forward the dining services team is researching sustainable seafood options, expanding its reusable program and preparing for the incorporation of compostable beverage cups from its campus beverage vendor. 

More From FoodService Director

Managing Your Business
change ahead sign large

The reality is that some people don’t like change. But as long as you partner with employees, there shouldn’t be major staff fallout.

It can be tricky to find the balance between listening to your team’s point of view on the changes and avoiding giving your power away. You may accept many or few recommendations, but you need to be able to explain your decisions. Regular department meetings to complete that circle of communication take more time, but it’s more efficient than doing damage control after the fact.

I’ve seen folks refuse to do a job based on their new job...

Ideas and Innovation
fsd marketing ideas

[ View the story "Marketing and operations ideas worth stealing" on Storify ]
Industry News & Opinion

Some Washington, D.C., foodservice operators may soon be required to provide staff with paid leave, as the city council on Tuesday passed one of the most extensive paid leave plans in the nation.

Barring a veto by Mayor Muriel Bowser, the measure mandates that all private sector employers in the district offer workers eight weeks of parental time off and six weeks to care for a sick relative.

While operators will not directly compensate workers—who will be paid 90% of their wages through a government-run insurance program—they will be hit with a 0.62% increase to employer...

Industry News & Opinion

Dallas Independent School District will serve breakfast and lunch over winter break for the first time this year, Dallas News reports.

Any child under 18 will be able to participate in the meal program, which will be offered in 12 cafeterias.

The Texas district will be partially reimbursed for the meals, receiving $3.39 per lunch served and 86 cents per breakfast. The remaining costs, which include paying cafeteria staff and supervisors, will be picked up by the district.

Read the full story via dallasnews.com .

FSD Resources