Sustainable food practices

student accepting ecobox container at food kiosk in mystic market

UVic's vision is to provide exceptional food and extraordinary service to the community.

University Food Services is committed to sustainable practices, such as offering Ocean Wise certified products, composting and recycling, promoting reusables, offering compostable disposables like straws, kraft bags, and containers, and choosing local suppliers and ingredients whenever possible.

New to campus?

Customer fees/discounts 

  • Eco-box has a one-time investment of $5 (free for first-year residents on campus).  
  • Single-use takeout containers now acquire a $0.50 ECO Charge.
  • Reusable coffee mugs receive a $0.25 discount.

Where to dine in on campus

Why dine in on campus? 

Opting for dine-in not only saves you from the environmental impact of single-use products but also contributes to our sustainability efforts. The waste management system at Mystic Market and the Cove Dining Facility, handled by trained on-campus staff, boasts an impressive 3% contamination rate compared to the 30% contamination rate in outdoor bins (2022 Waste Audit).

Did you know that the Cove's kitchen is one of North America's largest commercial passive house kitchens? It efficiently captures and redistributes heat to the entire building, benefitting all 398 residents. Take the Green Building Tour when you dine-in to explore the innovative design behind this eco-friendly facility!

On-the-go sustainable food practices 

You can still enjoy food on-the-go and reduce single-use products entering our landfill and waste diversion streams.

Here is how: 

  1. Sort-it-out: 93% of food packaging on campus is compostable or easily recyclable.
  2. Bring reusable: Bring your own cutlery, reusable mug, straws, and bags!  
  3. Get an Eco-Box: At Mystic Market and the Cove.
  4. Skip the straw: Bring your own, or skip the straw altogether.  
  5. Skip the accessories: The province of BC has passed legislation forcing all single-use accessories (utensils, straws, napkins, stir sticks, condiments, and beverage lids) to only be available by request or at self-serve stations. 

Get involved 

Tools and resources 

For Students: 

  • Meal exchange
  • Free store
  • Expanded recycling on campus

For employees: 

  • Accepting customer containers  
  • Food ware purchasing guidelines  
  • Posters, signage downloads

Please contact Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability for these resources!