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Trayless Dining. Pre-Consumer Waste Management. Economic Impact Saves on cost of energy, water, detergents and rinse aids Eliminates cost of trays Reduces food waste removal costs Environmental Impact Conserves energy by eliminating heating water Saves water

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trayless dining
Trayless Dining

Pre-Consumer Waste Management

Economic Impact

  • Saves on cost of energy, water, detergents and rinse aids
  • Eliminates cost of trays
  • Reduces food waste removal costs

Environmental Impact

  • Conserves energy by eliminating heating water
  • Saves water
  • Reduces food waste into landfills, incinerators and waste water facilities
  • Lessens the amount of detergents and rinse aids in washing trays.

Pre-Consumer Waste Management

Trayless Dining

  • Social Impact
  • Reinforces university’s sustainability initiatives
  • Contributes to sustainability efforts of the community
  • Encourages students and employees to participate in sustainability which bleeds over into their personal lives
  • *Many colleges and universities have reported an almost 50% reduction in food waste when switching to trayless dining.

Pre-Consumer Waste Management

Napkins and Napkin Dispensers

  • We use Torknapkins with EcoLogo(3rdparty certification)
  • Compostable material napkin
  • A one-at-a-time dispensing unit reduces paper usage and waste.

What is EcoLogo certification?

EcoLogo sets standards and certifies products in more than 120 categories, helping to identify, trust, buy, and sell environmentally preferable goods and services.

Fun Fact! GSU Dining has gone through 1,048,800 napkins since the 2011-2012 school year began!


Pre-Consumer Waste Management

  • Bulk Condiments
  • Switched from smaller plastic bottled condiments to bulk condiment dispensers.
  • Environmental Impact - minimizes plastic bottle usage and waste.
  • Economic Impact – saves GSU dining $9,084.29 per year.
  • Economic and Social Impact - decreases labor required to marry partial bottles together while eliminating a tedious employee task.

Fun Fact! GSU Dining has used 1,064 gallons of ketchup so far this school year!

pre consumer waste management
Pre-Consumer Waste Management


  • Food prices have increased dramatically in the last 5 years and LeanPathhas helped to thwart those additional costs.
  • Decreased our food cost, reduced our waste disposal costs and has increased employee engagement, creating more employee efficiency.

We use LeanPathWaste Management System to help control pre-consumer food waste. LeanPath weighs all pre-consumer food waste, generates reports on results and guides managers and employees on suggested ways to waste less. (Example-expired vegetables)



pre consumer waste management1
Pre-Consumer Waste Management

Lean Path Results

  • Less pressure on the overall food systems, specifically farmers, smaller carbon footprint, a decrease in fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, fuel and animal feed
  • Reduces waste to landfills which reduces methane and other harmful emissions.
  • Social benefits include creating a sense of community and shared support towards a common good among employees and customers
  • Compared to November 2009 baseline, to date, our waste avoidance=

42,650 pounds of food or $46,096.00 which has resulted in 16 metric tons of diverted CO2.



Post-Consumer Waste Management

GSU picks up all cardboard, aluminum and plastics weekly. They sort them and then bring it to a recycling processing center.

Recycling of Cooking Oil

  • Griffin Industries has over 65 years of experience in the recycling industry, Griffin ensures that spent cooking oil is handled efficiently and in accordance with all governmental and environmental regulations.
  • Recycled cooking oil helps creates superior animal feed and pet food ingredients, renewable fuels, organic fertilizers, ingredients used in consumer and industrial products like soaps, cosmetics, rubber and plastics.
  • Fun Fact! GSU Dining has recycled 12,110 pounds or 346 containers of cooking oil since the beginning of the school year.

Griffin Industries

insinkerator and somat
Insinkerator and SOMAT

Eco-Friendly Waste Disposal

  • Typical food waste is 70% water and 30% food
  • Disposers reduce waste by 85% 
  • Dining Halls use an Insinkerator or SOMAT to dispose, extract and pulp pre-consumer and post-consumer waste into a confetti like mixture
  • GreenCo- located in Barnesville, GA
  • GreenCo Environmental, a leading organic recycling company picks up pre-consumer and post-consumer mixture
  • GreenCo is the first food waste composting operation to receive a permit and endorsement from the EPA
  • GreenCo combines food waste, yard waste and wood waste creating a high quality organic compost with zero landfill contribution or re-sale

Eco-Friendly Waste Disposal

  • As mixture breaks down there is a 75% volumetric reduction
  • In 90 days, mixture is ready to be sold as compost, in bulk to farmers and manufacturers of bagged garden products
  • Since August, 2011, Greenco has collected:
    • Freshman Dining Hall, 6,500 pounds of food waste
      • A little over 3 tons!
    • Piedmont North Dining Hall, 9,490 lbs of food waste
      • Almost 5 tons!

Contact Information

Lenore Musick

Director of PantherDining, Insourced Operations


Suzanne Paltz

Piedmont North Dining Hall Manager