Cornell University says it has become the first Ivy League school to obtain the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) Chain of Custody certification, which enables its campus dining operation to serve MSC certified sustainable seafood at Cornell Dining’s 32 food service locations, which serve more than 27,000 customers per day.
The certification is part of a larger commitment to sustainability at Cornell that also includes trayless dining in select locations, sourcing fair trade coffee served in reusable mugs, biodegradable packaging in grab-and-go items and converting over 515 tons of food scraps and organic waste into compost. Cornell Dining also coordinates with the School of Agriculture to harvest more than 50,000 lbs. of potatoes and 1,200 bushels of corn every year from campus farms. Fresh yogurt and ice cream is produced during the school year at the Cornell Dairy.
The MSC certification process included an audit of seafood inventory handling conducted by a third party certifier as well as training of front line staff. MSC’s Chain of Custody verifies that in every step of the supply chain—from the fishers to the processor to the distributor and the customer—MSC certified seafood is not mixed with or substituted for non-certified seafood.
“We see our MSC Chain of Custody certification as the logical next step in our commitment to running a truly sustainable food service operation at Cornell,” says Cornell Dining Senior Executive Chef Steven Miller, CEC, CCA, “and sourcing seafood that’s certified sustainable is important to our students, staff, and faculty.”