Sustainability Efforts

Davidson's Dining Services staff works with its suppliers, customers and employees to create and maintain sustainable business practices. Below are some highlights of its ongoing efforts.


Pura Vida Coffee
The coffee served by the dining staff is supplied by S&D Coffee, a local company in Concord, North Carolina. Pura Vida Coffee is a nonprofit U.S. company that sells Fair Trade Certified organic, shade-grown coffee from Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The company advocates corporate social responsibility by donating its profits to help children and families in coffee-growing communities internationally.

All seafood served is caught or farmed in environmentally friendly ways, in accordance with the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program.

The Farm at Davidson College
Davidson Dining will work closely with the Farm Manager. Davidson Dining is committed to including fresh produce that is harvested from the Farm in our menus and offerings.

Red Baskets
The dining staff now serves food in reusable red baskets at Wildcat Den, instead of on disposable plates and trays.

The dining staff uses 100 percent recycled paper product napkins in Vail Commons, the Davis Café and the Wildcat Den, and places the napkins on the dining tables in Vail to reduce wasteful or excessive use.

Scratch Cooking
The Vail Commons staff makes most meals from scratch, which reduces the use of packaging and packaged materials.


Unused prepared foods leftover in excess
When possible, excess prepared foods are donated to The Bread of Life.

Used Fryer Oil
The college partners with local residents and US Foods for oil pick up so that it may be reused as bio-diesel fuel.

The school recycles its office paper, metal cans, glass and plastic, and a large recycle dumpster is located behind Vail. New employees are taught the procedures and value of recycling.

Cardboard Boxes
On average, the college in recent years has recycled 30 tons of cardboard per year, most of it from Vail Commons and the Davis Café. The Commons also makes boxes available to students at the end of the semesters for use in packing and moving.

China, flatware and glasses are washed and reused in the Vail Commons dining hall to reduce paper waste.

Bar towels
Towels are washed and reused in all campus dining locations to reduce paper waste.

Product Packaging
Vail Commons dispenses products in bulk, rather than portion packaging, to reduce packaging waste.

All dining service facilities collect food waste and send it to the grounds department. The food waste is then processed to make compost to be used on campus.


Equipment Replacement
The college installed energy efficient equipment in Vail Commons, including: Induction Burners, a TurboChef-Tornado Exhaust Hood System and Combi Oven.

Office Printing
The college removed all desktop printers and linked computers to one central printer, reducing printer cartridge waste and costs associated with unnecessary printing. Central printing also provides an ergonomic advantage by encouraging staff to move around the workplace. 

Dry Erase Boards  
Boards are located throughout Vail Commons to reduce paper usage.

Printing Paper
All printer paper is 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper.

Golf Carts
The college aims to replace all departmental golf carts with electric carts.  

The college replaced the upper ceiling lights in the Vail Commons dining with energy efficient LED lights.

Customer billing is handled electronically, eliminating printed bills and statements.

Job Training
Vail Commons partners with Mooresville High School to provide job training to students with disabilities, making them better equipped to enter the workforce after high school.

Wellness Program
The dining services staff voluntarily participates in an employee wellness program. The college believes employees that are healthy by choice are more apt to embrace the environmental issues and sustainable goals of the department.