The canteen tender committee, consisting of student and staff representatives from AAU, is currently finalising the requirements for the new tender. However, we already know that there will be a stronger focus on sustainability than has been the case before.
“The current canteen provider has a high degree of sustainability in their operations but, of course, the sales parameter has weighed highly, as it has to be good business to run a canteen at AAU. As we can now provide a subsidy for the new canteen tender, we can set better requirements for more sustainability, as well as for some of the parameters that matter to users at AAU, even if those cannot necessarily be seen as positive numbers on the bottom line.” Mary Christensen, Head of Department of Facility Services, AAU.
Some of the requirements that the committee has discussed include:
- Eco-labelling requirements
- The Organic Cuisine Label silver requirement + annual sustainability report
- Requirement for a subscription or ordering system (if enough people want it)
- Food waste requirements
The option to choose vegan and vegetarian dishes daily is also desired, as is possible in the current canteen. In general, there is a focus on variety within the canteen’s range, and perhaps even variety from canteen to canteen, as there are different wishes and needs at the canteens in Aalborg East, Aalborg City, Copenhagen and Esbjerg.
As a new feature of the tender, the future AAU canteen must explain how they, as suppliers, will work on sustainability in relation to the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Three other sustainable initiatives in canteen operations at AAU
A plastic cup that can be used again and again... and again
A new initiative in the canteen is a coffee mug and water glass made from recycled plastic. The glasses and mugs are durable and are expected to withstand up to 2000 trips through the dishwasher before they start to look worn. They will then be sold back to the supplier, who will granulate the plastic and recycle it into new cups.
One of the advantages of the new glasses and mugs, besides the sustainability in their production, is that they are very light compared to a mug made of ordinary glass. That makes a big difference to the lives of those who handle the washing up of glasses and mugs in big industrial dishwashers, as their lifting becomes easier and lighter.
Disposable cutlery has been phased out
All disposable cutlery has been phased out over a period of time and is, for example, not directly available in the canteen. It is still possible to purchase it when ordering. However, the cutlery that you order is sustainable.
Water in jugs rather than bottled water
Bottled water has been phased out along with disposable cutlery and has been replaced by water in jugs.
If you want to know more about the canteen and our sustainable operations, please contact Campus Service.