SAR Project | 2021

Assessing the Feasibility of Plastic Alternatives in UCLA Dining

Stakeholder: Erin Fabris

Team Leaders: Sophia Bozone, Phoebe Chiu

Team Members: Ying Xuan Chua, Ashley Fernando, Annie Pollak,  Jeffrey Van 

Project Description: 

Our team will be researching the usage of plastics by UCLA Dining and Catering to find ways to reduce or replace current use, given the guidelines set by Sustainability Manager Erin Fabris’ single-use plastic policy.

We will be focusing on phasing out purchases by Dining and Catering of single-use plastic takeout containers/utensils in favor of locally compostable or reusable alternatives. Details of our project could include reviewing current practices to determine the current plastic footprint, identifying new suppliers with locally compostable alternatives, and introducing a reusable utensils pilot program. We will be working with Dining managers to evaluate how these alternatives would fit into the current budget as well as UCLA Dining and Catering’s mission of “Hospitality First.”

Additionally, we will assess student attitudes and preferences toward proposed changes. Surveys will be our initial source of data, and we plan to follow up with a targeted focus group to hone in on best practices for future implementation. The overall objective is to produce an implementation plan that may roll out at the end of the quarter or the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year