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5 Things

5 things: UMass to start carbon labeling dining hall meals

This and the city of Los Angeles phasing out disposables in municipal venues are some of the stories you may have missed recently.

In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.

Here’s your list for today:

  1. UMass to start carbon labeling dining hall meals

The University of Massachusetts Amherst will now include carbon footprint information on its menus as part of wider commitments to reach carbon neutrality by 2032, becoming the first university in the U.S. to measure and highlight the carbon footprint of individual menu items. The first phase of the carbon labelling initiative launched during Earth Week, with all menu items served in the Hampshire Dining Commons given A-E carbon ratings.

Read more: UMass Becomes First US College To Start Carbon Labelling Cafeteria Meals

  1. Los Angeles to phase out disposables at city owned venues

Los Angeles City Council has unanimously approved more than a dozen measures to tighten restrictions on plastic bags, utensils, food containers and other disposables with a goal of making Los Angeles a “zero waste” city. Immediate changes will take place only at city-owned and sponsored events and properties, where the city government will begin to phase out single-use or disposable cups, water bottles, sealed condiment packages or plastic cups, forks, plates or bowls, with reusable items such as drinking glasses or bottles required to be made available. Condiments will be served from dispensers and water refill stations will be installed or made available at community events, catered events and in city-owned restaurants and cafeterias.

Read more: Aiming for ‘zero waste,’ L.A. backs new restrictions on plastic food ware

  1. Harvard housing squeeze raises dining questions

All but one of Harvard College’s 12 upperclassman houses will place students in overflow housing next year thanks to the oversized Class of 2025. with some students assigned to houses located in the Radcliffe Quadrangle to be placed in overflow housing at the Cronkhite Center, a former graduate student dormitory that was previously used for Covid-19 isolation. However, it is unclear where Quad students who live in Cronkhite, which has common kitchens on each floor, will be assigned to eat. “We do not have information about whether or not dining will be available in Cronkhite next year and this is a decision that will not be made at the House level,” Currier House Administrator Alana Brissette wrote in an email.

Read more: Harvard Students in 11 Undergraduate Houses Will Be Assigned to Overflow Housing

  1. District planning for 10-15% rise in food costs

As at just about every other dining operation, Lincoln Public Schools in Nebraska is seeing the sticker shock on food items, with ketchup up 40%, cereal 20%, yogurt 18% and chicken thighs 13% just as some examples. The food service department is planning for a 10%-15% increase in food costs across the board and is looking at absorbing the additional costs by strategies such as increasing the price for meals, and through the district's a la carte menu, which has brought in more than $1 million so far this year.

Read more: 'Everything is going up' — Lincoln school kitchens feeling pinch of rising food prices

  1. Sodexo Live! Expands recyclable cup deal with Ball Corp.

Ball Corporation and Sodexo Live! have announced an expansion of their multi-year partnership to advance sustainability efforts in sports and entertainment by bringing millions of infinitely recyclable Ball Aluminum Cups to major venues and events across the United States. Sodexo Live! venues already have Ball Aluminum Cups in venues such as Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, T-Mobile Park in Seattle and First Bank Amphitheatre in Nashville. The cups are also available at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, where they helped drive sustainability at the Big Game in 2020 and will be available to fans attending the upcoming Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix from May 6-8, 2022.

Read more: Ball Corporation and Sodexo Live! Expand Partnership to Bring Infinitely Recyclable Aluminum Cups to Additional Sports & Entertainment Venues and Events

Bonus: K12 Chefs to Watch: Metz Culinary Management’s Chef Don McIntosh builds K-12 street cred with trendy menu items

Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]

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