Frostburg Dining Services Launches Project Clean-Plate

College students are always on the move. With classes and work, schedules are often packed; however, students always find time to eat—so much—that tons of food goes to waste every year.  This year, Chartwells Dining Services introduced Project Clean Plate to Frostburg.

Project Clean-Plate is a program designed to reduce waste, raise awareness among students, and make Frostburg an increasingly eco-friendly campus.

David Glenn, director of dining services at FSU, said “I am a new contractor at Frostburg. My plans are to make some health and environmental changes amongst students.  We want them to know how the environment is affected because of waste.”

In February, Project Clean-Plate began at Chesapeake Hall.  Since then, food-waste has been weighed each week.

“If we can get the numbers down within the next few weeks, we’ll make donations to feed those in need,” Glenn said. “We’ve just recently purchased the rocket [composter], where all of this food is composted and preserved. “

The rocket is a composter that recycles food waste.  When students throw left-over food away, the trash is weighed and placed into the rocket. The first collection of  trash weighed-in at 294 pounds.

“It’s food that could be used elsewhere. It’s money that could be used elsewhere,” Glenn said, when explaining the importance of sustainability.  “I think it’s extremely important that we make everyone conscious of how much food is being wasted daily. “

The Project Clean-Plate  program is currently only located at Chesapeake Hall .

“At the Lane Center people come and go as they please and can take food with them, but at Chesapeake students have to eat and throw food away there. I’m sure if we weighed the trash in Lane, the numbers would triple. ” Glenn explained.

Students that finish their food can possibly win a gift from Chartwell Dining Services.

“We’re planning to start a raffle.  Students that do not throw away any food can participate in the raffle game. They write their name on a raffle ticket and we collect it. At the end of the week, whoever’s name is pulled from the raffle can win a prize. Hopefully with this game, students will understand how important it is to portion how much food they eat,” Glenn said.

“I think so much food is being wasted because people take more food than they can eat.  I don’t believe it’s intentional. Everything is served buffet style; everyone has the option of piling on food, but hopefully as the weeks progress that will decrease.”

In the future, Glenn would like for student’s to become instrumental in Project Clean-Plate.

“We’re posting up banners all throughout campus to make students are  aware of our campaign. We want them to know what’s going on so that they can make efforts of being healthier. We want them to participate in Project Clean-Plate. ” Glenn stated.

To learn more about Project Clean-Plate and sustainability at FSU, visit the following link:

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