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Report Card 2010

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University of Chicago

Dining Survey

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With the publication of the College Sustainability Report Card 2010, more than 1,100 school survey responses from over 300 institutions are now available online. In total, these surveys offer more than 10,000 pages of data collected from colleges and universities during the summer of 2009 . To access surveys from other schools, go to the  surveys section  of the website. To see grades, or to access additional surveys submitted by this school, please click the "Back to Report Card" link at the beginning or end of the survey.


Name:  Kathleen Fabiny

Title: Director, Data Research, Office of the President 

Date survey submitted:  7/20/09


1) Total annual food budget: [$3.5 Million ]



Note: Geographic location and seasonal availability are taken into account in assessing your response. "Local" is defined as within 150 miles of your campus.

2) Do you have any formal policies pertaining to local purchases?

[  ]  No

[x]  Yes: 20% of all purchases must be local or an MWBE business


Questions 3-5 pertain to locally grown purchases.

3) From how many local farms or growers do you purchase (excluding on-campus farms/gardens)? Approximately 5% of our purchases come from local suppliers:

[# 0 ]  Number from which you purchase directly.

[# 3 ]  Number from which you purchase through a distributor.

Please specify name and location of distributor: 

We purchase dairy products from C&C Dairy in Illinois. In addition our apples are sourced from a variety of local farms in Michigan.  


4) How much do you spend annually on purchasing food that was grown or raised locally? Approximately $85,000 (assessed from our dairy purchases only)


5) Please list foods you purchase that are grown or raised locally (e.g., fresh fruits, vegetables, meat, milk, fish, honey, maple syrup; foods that are processed locally should be listed in question 8):  We purchase apples, milk and ice cream from Michigan.


Questions 6-8 pertain to locally produced and/or processed items .

6) From how many local processors do you purchase?  Complete data not available. 


7) How much do you spend annually on purchasing food that was processed locally?  Complete data not available


8) Please list items you purchase that are processed locally (e.g., bread, granola, ice cream, baked goods, yogurt, cheese):   Ice cream, cheese and bread are processed locally.


9) Do you purchase milk from a local dairy?

[  ]  No

[  x]  Yes. Bareman’s Dairy: Holland, Michigan.


10) Do you source any food from an on-campus farm or garden?

[x] No


11) Do you participate in a farm-to-school program?

[x ]  No



12) Do you have any formal policies pertaining to the purchase of organic and/or sustainably produced food?

[ x]  No


13) Do you purchase organically grown or produced food?

[ x ] Yes. Items vary according to season; Dining Halls provide carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, mesculin mix, bananas, and cherry tomatoes. We also provide Silk Soy products, “Choice”  and “Ambassador” brand teas. Additionally  Aramark retail locations provide name brand organic products like “Newman’s Own,” and “Amy’s”.


14) How much do you spend annually on organically grown or produced food? [Approximately $54,000   ]


For questions 15-19, please indicate percentage based on annual dollar amount spent.

15) Do you purchase cage-free eggs and/or confinement-free meat products?

[ x ]  No


16) Do you purchase any grass-fed animal products?

[x ]  No


17) Do you purchase hormone- and antibiotic-free meat?

[ x]  No


18) Do you purchase hormone- and antibiotic-free dairy products?

[x ]  Yes. 100 %] 

Percentage hormone- and antibiotic-free. Type of dairy product: milk


19) Do you purchase seafood that meets Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch guidelines or Marine Stewardship Council standards?

[x ]  Yes. Please indicate.

[100% ]  Percentage purchased that meets guidelines. Aramark follows the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch List to avoid serving endangered species.


20) Do you offer specifically labeled vegan entrees on a daily, weekly, or other regularly scheduled basis?

[ x ]  Yes. The University has a Vegetarian- Vegan option provided daily. We label all our vegan and vegetarian options.


21) Please list and give percentages for any other sustainably produced food items you purchase that are not included above:  N/A



22) Do you purchase Fair Trade Certified coffee?

[  ]  No

[  ]  Some. Please describe:



23)  Do you purchase other Fair Trade Certified food products?

[x ]  Yes. Choice Teas and Ambassador Teas and coffee are provided Please indicate (repeat for each product).

[   %]  Percentage purchased that is Fair Trade Certified. Type of item:



24) Please indicate which of following your university-operated/contracted dining facilities offers.

[ x ]  Reusable and disposable dishware: Next academic year however ( 2009-2010) our dining halls will be converted entirely to reusable dishware.


25) If you offer disposables, please indicate materials used (check all that apply).

[  ]  Plastic or polystyrene

[ x ]  Postconsumer recycled content

[ x ]  Biodegradable/compostable. The U of C Booth School of Business uses bagasse products.


26) Do your dining facilities offer discounts or cash incentives to individuals using reusable dishware, bringing a bag, or bringing reusable containers? [  ]  No

[ x ] Yes. Please describe: In one dining hall, beverages served in the customer’s own reusable container are discounted by 10 cents.


27) Do your dining facilities use any polystyrene products (i.e., Styrofoam)?

[  ]  No

[ x]  Yes. We are hoping to phase out Styrofoam entirely but Styrofoam containers are currently used in one dining hall.



28) Do your dining facilities compost preconsumer food scraps?

[x]Yes. All our residential halls’ kitchens run preconsumer compost programs.

  29) Do your dining facilities compost postconsumer food scraps?

[  ]  No

[  x]  Yes. Please indicate the proportion of dining facilities that run postconsumer compost programs (e.g. two out of five dining facilities) and, if available, the combined annual tonnage composted.

[ 100  %]  Proportion of dining facilities that run postconsumer compost programs.  Approximately three tons a month are diverted from the dining hall and kitchen through our composting program.


30) Do your dining facilities donate excess food to a food bank, soup kitchen, or shelter, etc.? [

 x ]  No


31) Do your dining facilities have a trayless dining program?

[ ] No

[ x ]  Sometimes--on specific days, on certain occasions, or in specific locations. Please describe: During Earth week Aramark implemented trayless dining. Starting in the fall all dining hall will be “tray inconvenient,” locating tray stations towards the back of the dining commons in order to discourage people from using trays. 


32) Please tell us about any other steps your dining facilities have taken to reduce waste (e.g., food waste auditing, recycling used cooking oil for biodiesel production): 1) All cooking oils are trans fat free and are recycled. 

2) Purchase in bulk wherever possible to reduce packaging waste

3) Our Coke and Pepsi partners distribute from local bottling plants supporting local economies.



33) Please indicate which traditional materials your dining facilities recycle (check all that apply).

[  ]  None

[  ]  Aluminum

[ x ] Cardboard (corrugated)

[ x ]  Glass

[ x ]  Paper

[ x ]  Plastics (all)

[  ]  Plastics (# 1 and 2)

[x  ] Other


34) Are recycling receptacles located throughout dining locations

[x ]  No


35) What is the dining services' current waste-diversion rate (the percentage of recyclable waste diverted from traditional disposal)? [ 28 %]



Questions 36-37 are for informational purposes only; responses will NOT be included in the Report Card evaluation process.

36) Indicate if your dining services are:

[ x ]  Contracted. Please describe: We contract with Aramark for our graduate and undergraduate dining services.


37) Is the dining services director, or another dining services staff person, a member of any campus-wide environmental/sustainability initiatives or committees at your school?

[x]  No However members of the Sustainability Council meet regularly with the Aramark site manager and are building momentum on sustainable initiatives in the dining halls.




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