UCLA Medical Center wins foodservice award

Award from Healthcare Without Harm recognizes hospital's efforts to reduce its "climate footprint."

May 8—Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center has received a Food, Climate, Health Connection Award from Health Care Without Harm for the foodservice department's effort to reduce what HCWH calls its "climate footprint." The award is one of four given out by the organization, which works with hospitals to improve their environmental sustainability.

The award recognized several of the foodservice department's initatives, led by Director of Nutrition Patti Oliver, R.D. The department was cited for offering patients and retail customers at least one protein-balanced vegetarian or vegan option each meal; placing more emphasis on purchasing foods and beverages that are produced with the use of fossil-based fertilizers; reducing foodservice waste by tracking waste, composting materials and donating excess food to anti-hunger organizations, and using resuable and biodegradable serviceware for patient meal service.

HCWH also noted the department's program to encourage employees to use reusable water bottles rather than buying bottled water, and its efforts to encourage the purchase of energy efficient foodservice equipment and teach employees to turn off appliances when not in use.

"Our nutrition team has been at the forefront in developing initiatives that encourage healthier food choices, purchasing sustainable foods, recycling and composting in our foodservice areas,"  Dr. David Feinberg, president of UCLA Health System, said in a statement. "This is part of our vision to support a healthier community."

More From FoodService Director

Managing Your Business
business ladder climbing illustration

Recruiting talent is only half the battle for Mike Folino, associate director of nutrition services at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio. Once he’s attracted good employees, providing clear opportunities for advancement can help retain them—but knowing when to bring up the topic in conversation can be tricky.

Prior to hiring

Folino likes to touch on advancement during the initial interview process, but the extent to which he does so changes case by case. “I have had interviews where we knew right away that we needed to discuss our structure and...

Ideas and Innovation
woman surprise

When I joined the staff at FoodService Director in the spring of 2015, I couldn’t believe how much there was to learn about the intricacies of the industry. My past experience, from kindergarten to my college days to on-the-job meals, would lead me to believe that noncommercial dining was a kind of automated process—an amenity that’s expected, and one you only become aware of if something goes wrong.

But as with my own household chores, there are no magical elves making sure the business of feeding students, seniors and hospital patients is done, and done well. Foodservice...

Managing Your Business
hands team

In November, students at University of Missouri in Columbia began leading protests against discrimination faced by people of color on campus—including some marches through the dining halls. Julaine Kiehn, director of the school’s campus dining services, said the 2015-16 school year was a tough one, but she was proud of MU’s students for being at the forefront of a national movement.

And not only did the protests launch important conversations with students, but also with staff. Kiehn heard the protests and thought that her student workers, at least, might not feel safe and welcome...

Ideas and Innovation

When it comes to sustainability, sometimes the smallest kitchen changes can make the biggest difference. When Chris Henning, senior assistant director of dining services for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, switched from standard latex gloves to nitrile gloves, he also set up a recycling program. Once recycled, the gloves are turned into playground equipment, bike racks and park benches.

Henning says the nitrile gloves have been a good fit for his department, both in terms of durability and cost. “Participating in the campus buying program reduces the cost, as [our]...

FSD Resources