Chartwells, the dining service at Northern Kentucky University, began Project Clean Plate Feb. 18 to reduce lunch waste by 60 percent over 10 weeks.
If the goal is met, Chartwells will make a food donation to a local food bank.
To weigh the success of this program, the dining team weighs the amount of waste each day after the lunch period. The amount of food waste is then recorded on a poster in the dining location to track progress.
If the goal is not met, Chartwells will still make a small donation to a local charity. After two and a half weeks, the program had already reduced waste by 4 percent, residential dining,” director Nicole Aryan said.
Project Clean Plate is just one of many programs Chartwells has spearheaded in an effort to become more environmentally friendly.
Project Green Thumb, another Chartwells program, is showing success among students.
One of Green Thumb’s efforts is to encourage students to reuse and reduce whenever possible.
“We sold out of the reusable coffee mugs,” Arvan said. “We also have a recycling bin in the C-store now that students are using.”
Project Green Thumb encourages students to live a “greener” life with simple choices, such as using rechargeable batteries and reusable shopping bags. As well as recycling and saving electricity and water.
In the future, Chartwells hopes to expand on its environmentally friendly projects.
“We’re always going to be doing new things,” Arvan said.