"Litterless lunch" recycling may help schools cut costs

Recycling program hopes to reduce some of the $100,000 yearly hauling costs.

June 27—Recycling everything from plastic bottles and bags to pourable liquids and compostable food scraps, students at Ridgefield Pulbic Schools, in Conn., cafeterias have been learning to dramatically reduce waste this year.

In the next school year, that could end up saving the school system, which spends more than $100,000 a year on garbage hauling. Veterans Park and Scotts Ridge were the two schools where the “litterless lunch” program was most fully put into effect.

In its first full week of total recycling in late May, Veterans Park found that 132 pounds of cafeteria trash could be reduced to just 15 pounds to go in the Dumpster, according to Amanda Cordano of the Green Village Initiative, which pushed for and helped organize the program.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
moving boxes

Because we have 39 locations throughout the state, employees are offered a transfer if they’re planning a move. They’re rehired by the company, but there’s no additional training needed and employees are ready to go on Day 1.

Ideas and Innovation
staff pack

To keep staff motivated, we locked them in a room together. As part of a midsemester training session, we formed work groups and sent them to a local Escape Room to see which team could play the game together most effectively and escape first. Not only was this training a great team-building experience, but it supported a local new business and gave our staff a memorable experience.

Ideas and Innovation
star employee

Senior leadership meets twice a year to do organizational talent planning for every position from the top down. We talk about who are the potential high-performers, and go through how they can grow. People are your differentiator—you need to take care of your assets, and your assets are your human resources.

Industry News & Opinion

Students at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor will be served student-grown produce from the campus farm at dining halls this fall, M Live reports.

The dining team received its first batch of produce from UM’s on-campus farm in June, after students received the proper USDA certification to grow, harvest and deliver food to campus dining halls. In order to figure out what produce is needed, students communicate with the dining department weekly, and Michigan Dining purchases items accordingly.

"The students are involved from seed to plate," Executive Chef Frank Turchan...

FSD Resources