Dining Services aims to reduce food waste in campus dining commons

A Western Washington University student scrapes food waste into a bin during University Dining Services' Sustainable Dinner event April 20. Photo courtesy of Dining Services

Western Today staff

During its Sustainable Dinner served April 20 in the campus dining commons, University Dining Services held a "Weight the Waste" event to determine the amount of food dished up but not eaten during dinner.

Customers of each of the three dining commons scraped uneaten food scraps and paper napkins into compost bins, which were then weighed and divided by the total number of customers at the meal. The results:

  • Viking Commons: 6.6 oz. of waste per customer
  • Ridgeway Commons: 6.8 oz.
  • Fairhaven Commons: 5.5 oz.

"I believe Western students do care about reducing waste, and together we can improve on these results," said Ira Simon, director of University Dining Services. "Through educational efforts, awareness-building and more frequent 'Weigh the Waste' events, I believe we can reduce the waste per person by 33 percent in the coming year and up to 50 percent in the long term."

More photos from the Sustainable Dinner are available on the Dining Services Facebook page.

This event is part of a wide range of University Dining Services' sustainable practices.