Sustainable food


Progress towards achieving the UCA Catering Services Sustainable Food Policy and its associated action plan are reported annually to the Environment & Social Sustainability Working Group (ESSWG).

Achievements since 2015/16

  • In 2015/16, 86% of the purchases by UCA Catering Services across all four campuses were completed via The Universities Caterers Organisation (TUCO) approved suppliers. TUCO endeavours to embed sustainable procurement within all contracts and framework agreements.
  • In 2017/18, 14% of catering spend was with small local businesses, thereby supporting local economies and in the case of fresh fruit and vegetables, reducing food transport distances.
  • Since 2014/15, all eggs purchased have been free-range and carried the Lion mark stamp.
  • Since 2014/15, all fish prepared and served has been Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified.
  • Since 2013/14, 100% of meat and meat products have carried the Red Tractor mark. The Red Tractor logo indicates that food is safe to eat, and has been produced responsibly - from farm to fork.
  • Since 2013/14, free drinking water has been available at all times in all UCA canteens.
  • Since 2013/14, all single use serve ware for food is made from fully biodegradable material. In 2018 to encourage the use of washable re-usable ceramic tableware and charge of 25 pence was introduced on all food purchases in take-away single-use packaging.
  • Since 2014/15, reusable glass bottles have been used for all hospitality catering, including events and meeting room servicing.
  • Discounts (10p off) on the cost of coffee and tea are available at all catering outlets to those using their own mugs for hot beverages.
  • Vegetarian and vegan options are available in all UCA canteens.
  • No salt is added to any food prepared (hot & cold) by UCA canteens.
  • Since 2015/16 students have tended and produced a modest quantity of soft fruits and vegetables in Farnham as part of the ‘Secret Gardeners Society’, which was established with funding from the university and the support of catering staff. Most of the food produced has been harvested and used by the students who volunteer their time to nurture the plants. However, Farnham Catering Staff are able to collect fresh herbs and in consultation with volunteers utilise other produce.

Useful documents

Please click on links below to view and/or download: