Sustainable Food Policy of Altai State University


This policy supports the principles identified in The University’s Sustainability Policy and primarily concerns the provision and procurement of food at the University.

This page provides the policy framework through which food procurement will be delivered. The policy will be relevant to all the University’s Schools and Units and to all of the staff within them.

Policy Statement

As part of Altai State University commitment to provide environmentally friendly and sustainable campus hospitality, The University is fully aware of the impact that procurement, storage, production, consumption and wastage has on the environment and the need to ensure that the Sustainable Food Policy supports the University's environmental policies and practices.

This policy has been approved by the Catering Operations Director and will be reviewed annually and reported to The Altai State University Senior Management Team to ensure that continued progress is being made. This policy will be clearly communicated to Catering operations teams alongside developments made.

We will take responsibility to work with our suppliers, contractors and partners to minimise environmental and social effects associated with products and services we provide. We will seek to support local and smaller suppliers ensuring that they are not discriminated against in the procurement and specification process and that all procurements represent value for money.

Due to the nature of our diverse food and drink business we will encourage and continue to support some of the localised initiatives that are already in place which utilise small independent growers and producers.

Our aims and objectives:

  • Ensure that environmental and social responsibility is factored in to all tenders/agreements /contracts that The University of Nottingham enters into
  • Encourage and support small and medium sized businesses to bid for tenders
  • Invest in new technologies that have a positive impact on the environment
  • Work to monitor supplier deliveries to reduce food miles
  • Understand supplier commitment regarding environmental impact to include transport used, packaging, etc. and how suppliers communicate any progress made during the contract period and report annually on improvements
  • Increase usage of biodegradable packaging for sandwiches and other retail products
  • Support all University initiatives regarding recycling schemes, e.g. cardboard, paper, plastics, glass, tin foil and food
  • All redundant, replaced kitchen equipment will be correctly recycled in line with University policies
  • Communicate our commitment to serve sustainable food, including updates on progress and initiatives to customers and staff using The University network and internal communications, e.g. web, newsletters, meetings and point-of-sale materials
  • Encourage initiatives from staff and recognise initiatives taken on board
  • Maintain Fairtrade accreditation and seek to increase Fairtrade products available across all campuses
  • Use free range eggs across the organisation
  • Record food waste (kitchen) weight prior to the recycling process to establish quantities and effective waste reduction processes across individual locations which work to set menu cycles
  • Catered Halls will separate out customer food waste to record weight and seek initiatives to reduce plate waste
  • We will source cleaning materials that have reduced impact on the environment, ensuring that effectiveness is not compromised
  • We will reduce the use of artificial additives

Menus and raw materials:

  • Seasonal produce will be used throughout our operations
  • Our fish suppliers will have sustainable policies in place
  • Only fresh raw meat will be used; Mechanical Reformed Meat (MRM) will not be used
  • Cooking oil will be collected by our supplier in the original drums and recycled into bio diesel

Scope of the Policy

  1. This policy is focused on but not limited to provision and procurement of food at The University. It applies to all aspects of sustainable food, including:

    a) Procurement
    b) Provision
    c) Preparation
    d) Food waste and waste management
    e) Growing
    f) Education
    g) Climate change and carbon emissions
  2. All suppliers will be expected to assist the University in meeting the sustainable food policy.

Roles and responsibilities

  1. The University has a responsibility to procure food in a sustainable manner in accordance with the University’s Sustainability Policy.
  2. The Catering Operations Director has overall responsibility for the implementation and delivery of the policy within The University’s catering department. However, different departments will have particular responsibility for managing aspects relevant to their department.
  3. Responsibility for application of the principles and practical delivery of this policy within Catering Services lies with the Catering unit managers and their teams.
  4. Responsibility for application of the principles and practical delivery of this policy within the Schools and units lies with the Head of School or Department.
  5. Guidance and advice with regards to all aspects listed above will be provided by Estates Sustainability Team as required.

Customer Engagement

Annual and ongoing:

  • We will promote our sustainable food to customers to increase awareness and sales.
  • Any changes to our sustainable food practices will be communicated on an annual basis as a summary report with any landmark changes throughout the year communicated on an ‘as and when’ basis. The summary report will be produced by the Catering Operations Manager following an annual review in each May by the Catering Accreditations Review Group chaired by the Catering Operations Director.


On-going we will:

  • Investigate the capture methods and species of tinned fish and purchase more sustainable alternatives if relevant.

Fruit and Vegetables

On-going we will:

  • Promote and supply seasonal fruit and vegetables to customers.
  • Engage suppliers to measure the amount of local and seasonal fruit and vegetables and use to help with procurement decisions.

Long term we will:

  • Increase the sales of food from plant origin as an alternative to meat and dairy, focusing on the health, well-being and environmental benefits.


On-going we will:

  • Investigate ways of increasing higher welfare meat through cost neutral methods such as portion sizes and looking for value cuts, and review ways of increasing vegetarian meals where possible, e.g. ‘Green Week.
  • Investigate ways of reducing the amount of meat used, e.g. appropriate portion sizes and zero wastage.

Dry Grocery

On-going we will:

  • Investigate purchasing Fairtrade and fairly traded supplies of rice, pasta, flour, pulses, tinned products, coffee, tea, hot chocolate and sugar.


On-going we will:

  • Ensure tap water is available at every catering outlet.


On-going we will:

  • Move all disposable products to biodegradable alternatives where possible.
  • Reduce the amount of disposables used.

Cleaning Materials

On-going we will:

  • Include assessment at tender of the impact of current cleaning materials on the environment and source less harmful alternatives.


On-going we will:

  • Send zero food waste to landfill.
  • Recycle all waste cooking oil.


On-going we will:

  • Continue to reduce the number of deliveries made to each site by suppliers and ascertain from suppliers the sustainable credentials of their fleet.

Culture and Social

On-going we will:

  • Support a culture of healthy eating with meal choices reflecting cultural diversity.

Target Setting

This policy will be reviewed annually. It will not be a presumption that ever more specific numerical targets should be added year-on-year to facilitate the continual provision and procurement of more sustainable food. Decisions on procurement and accreditation should be made on the basis of a rational assessment of value, ethics and market trends.

Print version Modified 2.11.2023