At the University of Guelph, Hospitality Services takes our role in sustainability seriously. A sustainable business model must integrate economic, social and environmental considerations. Our corporate social responsibility plan has been developed over many years and our catering office has instituted a variety of sustainable practices that continue to grow and evolve.
Our vision is to be recognized as a leader in local sustainability practices in a Canadian university hospitality operation by becoming more environmentally responsible while remaining financially viable and satisfying the needs of our customers.
The following are some notable initiatives we have implemented with respect to our catering operations:
We support local food entrepreneurs by purchasing through a variety of suppliers/producers in Guelph and surrounding communities. When available, local Ontario goods are purchased and up to 45% of produce purchased is harvested here in Ontario. For many of our menus, we source Ontario grown produce through Don’s Produce and the Elmira Produce Auction Coop. These purchases, support up to 75 local farmers. The auction is a live, public auction for top quality, fresh picked wholesale lots of seasonal fruit & vegetables. Both of these suppliers are members of the Taste Real – Guelph Wellington Local Food Initiative, which Hospitality Services is also a founding member.
We contract directly with local farms and University of Guelph’s Research Stations to grow local sustainable produce for our catering menus. We endeavor to include local farm names on products sold on campus whenever possible.
Many of our chef’s menu items are made fresh from scratch, which reduces packaging and preservatives.
During the Organic Conference in January we highlight organic menus on campus through an Organic Week promotion.
We have increased our purchases of sustainable seafood products and work with suppliers who support programs such as Ocean Wise, Sea Choice and MSC.
For more information on our sustainability initiatives in catering, please contact us at 519-824-4120 Ext. 53350.
Our complete Sustainability Plan can be found on our website.