UBC Undergraduate Research

AMS Food and Beverages Outlets Operational Sustainability : Project Report Saxena, Aman; Pregnolato, Guilio; Murthy, Janani; Kota, Sri Apoorva


The University of British Columbia recently developed a zero-waste action plan to reach towards sustainability leadership. Participating in this collective effort, the SEEDs initiative collaborated with AMS Food and Beverage services to investigate food ware procurement and a potential source of cross contamination within the NEST building. We developed an inventory of food ware outputted by each outlet and investigated the likelihood of back-of-house waste sorting leading to cross-contamination; finally, we made short observations that we deem useful for policy makers. The primary stakeholders are the food and beverages outlets of the NEST (both AMS and non-AMS operated), the general staff of the NEST, and our SEEDs community partners. To fulfill the objectives of the project, key staff of AMS governed food outlets were interviewed and handed out surveys especially prepared for this project. The data collected were analyzed and reported in two forms: qualitative and quantitative. Our key findings are: • Back-of-House sorting is informal, yet unlikely to result in cross contamination, since only garbage is collected in a black bag. Outlets are opposed to standardization of bins or colour coded bags due to space and procurement complications. • The centralized procurement of AMS outlets contributes to their purchasing power and sustainable practices. This could be leveraged to raise the sustainability efforts of non-AMS outlets within the NEST. • Changes in waste management must be done in agreement with AMS operational staff, UBC Sustainability and UBC Building Operations. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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