March 26, 2019

ASF Weighs Gordon’s Waste

By Jonathan Chandra (‘19)

Gordon College has generated 400 pounds of food waste in one day.

On Nov. 14, student club Advocates for a Sustainable Future (ASF) hosted a “Weigh Our Waste” event in Lane Student Center.

From 7 a.m. to. 7:30 a.m., with cooperation from Bon Appetit, the contents of the trash bins in Tupper Hall and waste from the food carousel were weighed. On what a campuswide ASF email called a “slow day,” with 667 dining swipes, total waste amounted to 441.5 pounds.

“We estimate that 400 pounds or so of this waste is from food alone!” the email read. “A little more than two-thirds of a pound of waste was thrown away per person, which is equivalent to a full plate of food!”

As part of the event, a table was set up on the Coy Pond side of Tupper, where ASF members raised awareness about food waste.

Tryston Kwong ’22 was among the students to visit the ASF table to learn more about the initiative.

“It’s a really good idea to bring awareness to the amount of food we waste, especially here at Gordon. I’ve worked in the dish room . . . just the amount of food that gets put in the tray, in the carousel, I see whole plates of food,” he said.

Weigh Our Waste was spearheaded by Amelia Bowser ’20. The inspiration for the initiative came from a group project about food waste in Bowser’s environmental science course.

 

Bowser recently became a Climate Leadership Fellow, a position granted to undergraduates through Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. As part of her fellowship, Bowser received a $1,000 stipend to fund the Weigh Our Waste project.

She plans to hold another weighing event in December; she hopes that the total that day will be reduced to 300 pounds.

When asked if there was one practical step every Gordon student could take to prevent food waste, Bowser’s answer was pointed.

“Think before you take anything if you’re actually going to eat it. It’s a really simple thing.”

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