By protecting and improving our environment, the communities where we do business and the students we serve, Sodexo makes every day a better day and every tomorrow a better tomorrow.

Sustainability Initiatives

Your Sodexo Campus Dining Team is dedicated to sustainability.  We know we can all work together to make a positive impact right here at Northwestern State University. In addition to the many initiatives we take on as a company, we have implemented the following programs specific to Northwestern State University.

SMART

The Sustainability Management and Reporting Tool (SMART) is a comprehensive, yet easy to use dashboard that provides baseline sustainability performance, prioritizes initiatives, and tracks continuous improvement in four key areas - carbon and energy, water, waste, and healthy and sustainable food and environments.

Waste Reduction Efforts

Weigh the Waste

Did you know that 40% of the food produced in our country is wasted?  Periodically throughout the school year, we conduct a Weigh the Waste event.   During the event, we weigh all of the uneaten food from guest’s plates.  We consolidate the findings and report back to the community.  We tie this to an awareness campaign that informs guests about food waste and its impact to our environment and our communities.  We hold frequent campaigns in which we compare our results (and hopefully see our waste decline).

Trayless Dining

We promote a trayless campus. Customers without trays typically waste less food and beverages. It is also a healthier approach to eating, as we all know that at times our eyes are bigger than our stomach. Trayless dining also reduces the amount of water and detergents needed to wash trays - and saves energy too! 

Xprss Nap Dispensers

Xprss Nap Dispensers save energy and waste.  The napkins are made of 100% recycled paper and the dispenser will encourage customers to take (and waste) fewer napkins. Energy is saved because less power is used to recycle paper products than to create them from virgin material.  

APEX Dishwashing System

APEX combines technology and products designed to save water and energy, minimize the impact of products on the environment, and has a built-in method of measuring results. The APEX management approach uses a tablet PC and wireless technology to communicate with the system’s controller to download, process and analyze data to establish each foodservice operation’s “rack-to-guest ratio.” By monitoring and improving this ratio, the system helps reduce the amount of water and energy used at each facility, and improve total operational efficiency.

Bulk Condiments

Individual packets of condiments are useful in some instances, but they result in extra waste.  If you are dining on site or you can add the sauce to your item before you leave, please use the bulk dispensers to reduce our waste.

Recycling Fryer Oil into Biofuel

French fries to fuel. Indeed, our fryer oil is recycled into biodiesel that is used to power a variety of vehicles - from delivery fleets to farm equipment.

Choose to Reuse

Choose to Reuse is a reusable container program designed to reduce waste and help achieve Sodexo's Better Tomorrow commitments by replacing single-use disposable food and beverage containers with reusable containers.

Printing on Both Sides of the Paper

To save paper, we use paper with recycled content and we print on both sides whenever possible.

Reusable Dishware

We offer china dishes in our dining locations.  This reduces waste associated with using disposable containers.  Dining in?  Be sure to use china.  We also use china at our catered functions on site.

Green Cleaning

“Green Seal”

92% of the chemicals Sodexo uses are “Green Seal” certified, concentrated or sustainable.

Energy Reduction Efforts

Daylighting

The windows in our dining room allow us to enjoy a tremendous amount of natural light while dining.  Natural light not only provides a more comfortable environment, it also reduces our energy usage by allowing us to turn off lights.

On/Off Protocol

To save energy, we only turn our equipment on when it is needed and turn it off as soon as we are done using it for the day.

Energy Star Appliances

ENERGY STAR is a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) voluntary program that helps businesses and individuals save money and protect our climate through superior energy efficiency.  When replacing equipment we choose Energy Star rated appliances.  

Energy Efficient Lighting

Where feasible we have replaced our incandescent bulbs with compact flourescent bulbs to reduce our energy consumption.

No Idling at Loading Docks

Working with our vendors, our catering staff and our campus facility services staff to make sure all vehicles are turned off while they are parked in our loading dock.

Local / Seasonal / Responsible Sourcing

  

Local Suppliers 

We work closely with local produce distributors to maximize the fruits and vegetables purchased from local farms. We also purchase from local dairies, and participate in farm to school initiatives.  Tracking local purchases helps us to meet our Better Tomorrow Plan commitment of 20% local purchase by 2020.  

Sustainable Fish and Seafood

We are committed to serving sustainable seafood and fish.  By 2015 100% of our fish and seafood will be sustainably certified by the Marine Stewardship Council or the Best Aquaculture Practices.  We do not purchase any at risk species.

Local Dairy

All of our fluid milk is purchased from local dairies that do not use rBST.

Organic

Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations.  Organic meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones.  Organic food is produced without using most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge; bioengineering; or ionizing radiation.  Before a product can be labeled ‘organic,’ a Government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer is following all the rules necessary to meet USDA organic standards.  Look for the menu icon identifying organic foods.

Sustainable Catering

All it takes are a few simple steps to more sustainable catered events.    We feature menus that are locally grown, seasonal, organic, vegetarian and/or well balanced. We use china serviceware whenever possible, but if necessary, we try to use compostable and/or recyclable disposableware.  We strive to eliminate bottled beverages when possible by replacing them with pitchers of drinks and reusable glassware.

Each season we unveil a catering menu that highlights the season's bounty.  Not only does it increase variety, it also features food that is in season.

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Northwestern State University | Dining Services | 185 Sam Sibley Drive | Student Union Suite # 160 | Natchitoches LA 71497 | tel. (318) 357-4385 | Contact Us