Going Green and Saving Green: University of South Florida Celebrates One-Year All Ecos Anniversary

The results are in: at University of South Florida in Tampa, Eco-Takeouts™ are not only good for the environment, but also for the bottom line.

As a part of its school-wide effort focused on creating a “cleaner, greener USF,” Dr. Christian Wells, Director of the Office of Sustainability, began looking for ways to reduce waste in the area of foodservice. Working with Jenna Burns, Marketing Manager, USF Dining Services/Aramark, Dr. Wells succeeding in eliminating all Styrofoam™ takeout containers in 2010. The exclusive use of
Eco-Takeouts™ is just one of several foodservice sustainability initiatives, and also complements the reusable mug program. Students enthusiastically embrace the Eco-Takeouts™ containers, and don’t mind paying the $4.00 deposit as a part of their meal plan fees.

USF has found that the Styrofoam™ ban helps the earth AND the budget. Here are just a few facts:

• Before the ban, USF used and discarded 8,000 disposable containers a week or 250,000 containers a year.

• These quantities represent 30% of all garbage generated by USF.

• By buying Eco-Takeouts™, USF Dining Services is saving at least $6000 per year.

The NBC and ABC affiliates in Tampa covered the one-year anniversary of all Eco-Takeouts™ usage in recent news broadcasts. To see video of these reports, click on these links:

Looking at USF’s No Styrofoam Policy

USF is taking green to a whole new level

About Wilma

As G.E.T.'s Sustainable Products Manager, I have more than 15 years of experience managing quick serve and casual dining restaurant foodservice promotions. And what do I know about sustainability? Well, I read eco research, study best practices, and follow Mom’s example by reusing grocery bags and recycling cans. Like many of you, I am looking for ways to apply environmental research and eco-friendly best practices in our schools, companies, and communities. I'll share what I learn, and pass along some tips-- mine and others-- you can apply to your own "green" goals.
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One Response to Going Green and Saving Green: University of South Florida Celebrates One-Year All Ecos Anniversary

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