Waste reduction

Sort it out Station

Waste reduction and diversion are important considerations to Food Services' daily operations and we work diligently to reduce waste at all steps of our process.   

Working closely with the Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability and the Department of Facilities Management, we are committed to aligning with UVic's ultimate goal of eventually becoming a zero waste institution and we are proud of our current 84% landfill diversion rate.

You can find information on how to properly dispose of waste using UVic's Sort-It-Out Stations or how to recycle specific items on campus.

How We Reduce & Divert Waste

Inventory System

  • We use FOOD-TRAK, a robust inventory system used to track and assist with production & waste management in our kitchens
  • Food Trak calculate the quantities of ingredients needed to purchase for each recipe
  • Ex: If a lasagna recipe makes enough for 10 people, but there’s a function to host 1000 people, Food Trak will calculate how much of each ingredient to buy so that excess food (food waste) is reduced
  • Waste sheets are produced each month to track inventory and product that is thrown out
  • PAR (periodic automatic replenishment) levels are set up on all food products to ensure minimum levels of stock are kept on hand to meet customer demand. This helps us order the right amounts every time so that food waste is reduced.

Waste Management

  • We have a diversion rate of over 84% within our department
  • Unique sorting methods are used to ensure waste is put in the appropriate streams (recycling, composting, garbage)
  • Behind the scenes, the kitchen has a three pail system for waste streams (organics, recyclables and garbage). Many kitchens put everything into the garbage
  • All end of meal food trays are sorted by staff to ensure 100% of plastics are diverted to the recycling stream v.s. landfill.
  • There are no available recycling, composting or garbage bins available for customer use as UNFS outlets to ensure as much of the waste as possible is property sorted by our trained staff

Utensils and Packaging

  • All disposable forks, knives, spoons, napkins, stir sticks and straws are compostable
  • Coffee cups, lids, sleeves and takeout boxes are recyclable
  • Plastic bags are no longer offered at our cash stations
  • We focus on dine-in plates, bowls & cutlery in our main facilities (Mystic & The Cove)
  • Disposable takeout containers now acquire a $0.50 ECO Charge
  • Disposable coffee cups now acquire a $0.25 ECO Charge
  • Reusable coffee mugs receive a $0.25 discount

Bottled Water and Beverages

  • There is no bottled water sold within The Cove Dining Facility
  • There is no bottled water sold at the meal kiosks in Mystic Market
  • Introduction of a new reusable fountain cup at The Cove
  • Outlets feature water fountains with refill taps for easy refilling of cups or personal water bottles

ECO Box Program

  • The ECO Box Program is an opt-in reusable container program to reduce waste
  • Focuses on waste reduction rather than diversion
  • Launches at The Cove as a pilot program with goals of rolling out to Mystic Market in near future