Prepared by the UK Office of Sustainability
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November 2018 Sustainability eNews
After a successful Campus Sustainability Month, check out these new opportunities below! 
UK Student Sustainability Council Grant Workshop Nov. 14th

 Join the Student Sustainability Council on November 14th at 6:00 PM in the 90 room 219. Learn how to get involved with the SSC, develop your own project and how to apply for funding. This event is open to students, faculty and staff. Food and drinks will be provided. You can find more information here.

Call For Posters: 8th Annual Sustainability Forum

Students are invited to submit projects, artwork, design concepts, and other initiatives that highlight sustainability issues. Faculty and staff are welcome to attend. Deadline for abstract submission is November 19, 2018. The Sustainability Forum will be Thursday, December 6, 2018 in the Hilary J Boone. Center. More information here.
UK Adopts Sustainability Strategic Plan 
UK recently adopted the Sustainability Strategic Plan (SSP), which establishes goals for 5 important operational areas: materials management, energy, transportation, buildings and grounds, and food and dining services. The SSP also includes the university's Emissions Reduction Commitment.

UK Dining Exceeds Benchmarks for Local Food Purchases

**Originally printed in UKNow

The University of Kentucky released the UK Dining Sourcing Report for Fiscal Year 2018, showing that local purchases exceeded both the Kentucky Farm Impact benchmark and the overall Kentucky Farm and Food Business Impact (KYFFBI) benchmark set for the period from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018.

Increasing levels of local food sourcing and support for the state's businesses and farm economy were critical elements of the dining partnership and contractual relationship forged between UK and Aramark.
The partnership has led to millions of dollars in investments on UK's campus as well as strategic emphasis on growing support for the state's farm economy. 

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) called for UK dining to spend at least $672,000 in Kentucky Farm Impact purchases during the 12-month period. The actual expenditures came in at $1,045,600, exceeding the contractually mandated target by $373,000.

Food Business Impact purchases totaled $707,000 for the fiscal year. When added to the local farm impact purchases, UK Dining’s combined KYFFBI impact totaled about  $1,752,000, again exceeding the mandated target of just over $1,730,000.

We are very pleased with the progress we are making as a result of this partnership to support Kentucky’s local food economy and farm families,” said UK Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration Eric N. Monday. “The UK community recognizes the social, environmental, and economic values the Commonwealth receives by supporting home-grown products from Kentucky farms and Kentucky entrepreneurs.

"The continued increase each year in those purchases resulting from our partnership underscores the shared commitment UK and Aramark have to the Commonwealth and the state’s agricultural economy.”

UK's local food procurement program emphasizes two kinds of economic impact:  farm impact and business impact. Farm impact purchases have at least some ingredients that can be traced back directly to a Kentucky farm. Business impact purchases do not have any Kentucky grown or raised ingredients but are produced by businesses owned by Kentucky entrepreneurs or manufactured in facilities located within Kentucky.

"Three major factors contributed to the continued growth of UK Dining’s local food procurement efforts,” said Lilian Brislen, executive director of The Food Connection, a College of Agriculture, Food and Environment institute. “We have created robust ways to track our progress through the implementation of monthly purchasing reports; the opening of Champions Kitchen, a residential dining facility in the new Gatton Student Center, created even more opportunities for local food purchasing; and the strategic integration of new secondary distributors specializing in farm-impact products helped continue our expansion.”

The Food Connection was established and funded by Aramark as part of its partnership with the university to create UK Dining.

Products of note include Kentucky farm-impact hamburger patties produced specifically for UK Dining, grass-fed beef, pork, and pastured chicken sourced from Marksbury Farm, organic shell eggs from Stone Fall Farm, and Crank & Boom Ice Cream, which is made primarily with JD Country Milk.

"We have made progress each year in our commitment to Kentucky’s local food economy as a result of this partnership,” said Melody Flowers, executive director for strategic analysis and policy at UK. “We are closely monitoring and tracking that progress as a way of continually strengthening and expanding our commitment to our students, faculty and staff and to the Commonwealth we serve, which depends on a vibrant agricultural economy.”

UK Recycling at Football Tailgates


UK Recycling, in collaboration with UK Athletics, has started a new initiative to help increase recycling at Kroger Field during football games. At home games, fans in the tailgate lots can see the Big Blue Recycling Crew passing out clear bags for recycling & black bags for landfill waste. They also spend time educating fans on what is recyclable while handing out giveaways like koozies and sunglasses made from recycled plastic. The goal of this program is to make recycling fun, easily accessible, and the norm at Kroger Field by empowering fans to recycle.

The Big Blue Recycling Crew is made up of student volunteers from various organizations who help make this goal a reality. In exchange for their hard work, UK Recycling provides the organization with a donation. If you are a part of a UK Student Organization that would be interested in volunteering, feel free to contact us at

In addition to the Big Blue Recycling Crew, UK Recycling has placed blue recycling dumpsters throughout the tailgate lots to make recycling bottles, cans, cardboard and other recyclables as easy as possible. New blue recycle containers have been placed around the stadium to capture bottles or cans. UK Athletics has also worked to upgrade the recycling and landfill containers at the gate entrances and elevator lobbies. UK Dining has continued to expand their food donation program to help reduce the amount of food going to the landfill, which helps both the community and our diversion rate.

So far, the program has been a success! The recycling rate has increased from 5% (average recycling rate at last year’s football games) to 12%! The overall waste diversion rate (includes weight from recycling and food donation) has increased to 14%, our highest yet. Over time, we expect these rates to continue to increase thanks to the fans and Big Recycling Blue Crew.

For more information about what can be recycled at UK and home football games, check out our website and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to see pictures from this year’s games!

Opportunities & Resources:
  • Sustainability Film Series presents Just Eat It on Nov. 13th. in the W.T. Young Library Auditorium on November 13th at 5:30 PM. 

  • Final SSC project submittal deadline for Fall 2018 11/27; all applicants must be prepared to present on 12/4.
  • The 8th Annual Sustainability Showcase will be on December 6th from 4:00-7:00 PM in the Hilary J Boone Center.
**If you have a story that you want included in Sustainability eNews, please email
Copyright © 2018 University of Kentucky Office of Sustainability, All rights reserved.

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