Pitt recognized both state-wide and nationally for commitment to zero food waste!
The University of Pittsburgh has recently been recognized by both the Pennsylvania Resources Council (PRC) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for their food recovery achievements.
Food Recovery Heroes, a student group at The University of Pittsburgh committed to sustainability began recovering surplus food from a campus bakery in 2014 when they noticed food was being thrown out at the end of the night. After conversations with chefs and volunteer recruitment, four years later students are recovering from multiple dining halls and cafeterias across campus including the basketball arena after games and concerts. Students and Pitt Dining teamed up with the local food recovery organization 412 Food Rescue and together the students, Pitt Dining, and 412 Food Rescue have recovered more than 23,000 pounds of surplus food from campus - delivering it to local hunger-fighting agencies in the area including the campus food pantry and the local housing authority.
Nick Goodfellow, Sustainability Coordinator at Pitt, calls the student group an “invaluable member of the Pitt service and sustainability community.” The group’s efforts have led to the recognition Pitt has received in the past year regarding the university’s sustainability practices.
The PRC’s Zero Waste Awards aim to recognize environmental leaders for their commitment to sustainability and waste diversion. Pitt was awarded the Zero Waste Excellence award in early 2019. This award followed the EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional award in the Data Driven category for colleges and universities, at the end of 2018. The university was recognized for their success with the EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge.
The Food Recovery Heroes are now moving forward with a compost program expansion to compost 50% of food waste by 2025.
Check out the full stories regarding both the PRC and EPA’s awards!