UCCS Dining and Food Serives

Employee Awareness

  • Semi annual employee meetings include updates of Sodexo sustainability initiatives and Waste Minimization Overview for training purposes
  • CPM (culinary planning) meetings used to focus on day to day sustainability practices (equipment use, recycle, waste reduction, etc)

Dining Facilities

  • During the past year Dining Services has introduced the following initiatives focusing on sustainable best practices:
  • In conjunction with UCCS has renewed food service contract through 2017 which specifies several goals related to sustainable practices to include:
    • Establishing an on campus greenhouse to provide fresh organic produce to be utilized in the renovated Overlook.
    • As a component of the Overlook renovation, continue and expand the use of durable utensils for dining
    • Discontinue the use of Styrofoam containers for "to go" 
    • Within the design of the Overlook, refine the area dedicated to waste differentiation 
    • With the opening of the new Overlook, eliminate the sale of bottled water
    • Will move to trayless format in the Overlook
  • Partnered with the Director of the Office of Sustainability and student volunteers in establishing a relationship with Shamrock Foods in order to define the most sustainable products available. Met with the sales representative from Shamrock and included members of the Office of Sustainability for product familiarization.
  • Participated in UCCS composting program during the academic year and focused on employee training so that they understand the importance of separating compostable waste.
  • Sodexo at UCCS has agreed to invest in and will be participating in a pilot program, beginning in August along with 50 other Sodexo accounts nationwide, introducing Lean Path. This is a program designed to track food waste within the food service operation. A view of the program can be seen here: http://leanpath.com/
  • Dining service employees were introduced to the staff of the Office of Sustainability at our biannual all staff meetings. During this time they were advised of the sustainability initiatives which UCCS has implemented. Dining staff met with several of the "Goalies" who spent considerable time within the dining facilities educating students and staff on the importance of waste differentiation.
  • Sodexo offered incentives in partnership with the Office of Sustainability for several campaigns throughout the academic year.

Waste Minimization

  • Weighed wet waste from each meal service during the Spring semester. It was found that an average of 150 lbs per day was being discarded into waste stream. 
  • Switched to trayless format in the Lodge in fall '10
  • Fall '10 Celebrity Waiter event featured Colorado showcased products


  • Rolled out Aspretto coffee and Numi program in Lodge and University Hall in fall 09 and Fall 10 respectively. These products are organic fair trade. Must purchase new coffee brewers with this program which are made from recycled materials 
  • Mailed postcards to UHall students made on 100% recycled paper and vegetable inks 
  • All of the display cases at UHall were recycled from another Sodexo account in Denver. The equipment was retro fitted with Simply to Go and Aspretto merchandising using recycled materials

Clyde's Pub

  • Designed Clyde's to be as eco friendly as possible. Partnered in the reusable container program


  • Offer reusable mug purchase program and discounted refills when those mugs are reused


  • Discarded cooking oil is used for biofuel production.
  • Participate in Care and Share program in which canned food products are donated, in addition, each Friday leftover food is donated to Marion House
  • Separating waste and recyclable materials currently using two recycle containers and one wet waste container
  • On 9/28/11 assisted SEAS in preparing the first annual Harvest Dinner at the Heller Center using products from Venetucci Farm and Haystack Mountain Dairy


  • NACAS client dinner at the Cave of the Winds featured Colorado lamb, beef, cheeses, smoked trout and root veggies.
  • Switched to all compostable disposable materials for Catering events in fall ‘10
  • Offering durable utensils and educational signage to customer for reducing the amount of disposable utensils
  • Replace colored non-compostable napkins at Freshman Orientation with recycled napkins that are compostable.

Local Food Sourcing

  • Currently display local food map for Colorado vendors in Overlook and Lodge
  • Colorado vendors used by Sodexo with Shamrock Foods:
    • *Rice's Honey
    • *Mission Foods
    • *Trinidad - Benham
    • *Sam's Tomatoes
    • *Canon Potato
    • *Fagerberg
    • *Petrocco Farms
    • *Rakhra Mushrooms
    • *Continental Sausage
    • *Old Timer Brand Sausage
    • *Spartoe Egg Farms
  • Monitor local food purchases via Shamrock Buys Colorado monthly report
  • Use Robinson dairy for dairy purchases

Reducing Energy Use/Emissions/Kitchen Carbon Footprint

  • Turn on equipment 15 minutes before needed and turn off after use.
  • Utilize production schedule to conform with culinary needs and follow culinary planning process
  • Refrigerated areas kept clean and organized.
  • Computers and lights turned off when not in use.
  • Equipment calibrated to insure correct cooking temperatures.
  • Hood filters cleaned monthly
  • Using sustainable cleaning solutions and concentrates. Monthly inspections by Ecolab to ensure correct water/cleaning solution concentrations
  • Follow recipes and portions, batch cooking

Future Plans

  • Reduction to disposable products in the Overlook through the introduction of reusable durable utensils, plates and bowls