Sustainability with Dining Services at Winona State University 

At Winona State University Dining Services, we work hard every day to make our operation as sustainable as possible. Everything we do has sustainability in mind from turning off lights during non-service hours to serving cage free eggs. With that being said, you are probably not aware of a number of things that we do here. We encourage you to check out our list, and as always, feel free to give us any feedback you might have.

What we are doing right now:


*Please note: Frozen yogurt is not included

Here are the next items that we have targeted as areas of growth.

The Clean Plate Program:

Chartwells Dining Service is committed to our clean plate program to reduce unnecessary food waste in our dining programs and preparation areas. In return we donate a portion of the dollars saved to local food shelves and holiday dinners for those less fortunate. All we ask is that our diners follow the motto:

“Take what you want but eat what you take.”

The dining program operates on the fees you pay so waste and theft directly impact those costs from year-to-year. The less food wasted, the more opportunity it provides to share with those in need and to keep your costs down each year.

National programs in which we participate:

June 22, 2009 – As part of their commitment to sustainable agriculture and wellness, Compass Group North America is piloting several programs to support ‘buying locally’ (defined as food grown within a 150 mile radius) across the country with ‘AG in the Middle’ being the primary focus.

August 31, 2009 - The non-therapeutic use of antibiotics in animal production is a growing public health concern because it decreases the effectiveness of antibiotics to treat diseases in humans. Therefore, we only serve chicken and turkey that has been produced with restricted use of these drugs, especially as a growth additive in feed. This policy may exclude some processed products. Our contracted supplies are required to provide products which adhere to specific criteria developed in partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund.

Seafood Watch
The Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch program empowers seafood consumers and businesses to make choices for healthy oceans. In doing so, the program works to transform seafood markets in ways that create incentives for sustainable fishing and aquaculture practices.


 rBGH Free Fresh Yogurt and Fluid Milk-Science and experience has clearly demonstrated that the use of artificial bovine growth hormones in dairy cows is detrimental to the well-being of the animal. The medical community has expressed apprehension that the use of these hormones may also be harmful to human health. Due to these concerns, we serve only fresh yogurt and fluid milk from cows that have been certified to be free of the artificial growth hormones rBGH/rBST. 

What Is Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone in Milk (rBGH or Rbst)?


Animal Welfare Issues

Cows suffer higher rates of mastitis (udder infections) as well as a variety of other harmful effects such as birth disorders, increased pus in milk, hoof problems, heat stress, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal problems. These health issues force farmers to increase the therapeutic application of medically important human antibiotics.  Antibiotic use in animal production contributes to antibiotic resistance in humans. 

The Human Health Concerns

The injection of rBGH in cows elevates another powerful growth hormone called IGF-1, which has been identified in medical studies to increase breast, prostate, colon, lung and other cancers in humans.  Scientific studies suggest that IGF-1 survives pasteurization as well as digestion.  It can enter the bloodstream in sufficient quantities to potentially trigger increased cancer rates.  Source: Physicians for Social Responsibility.

A Cornell University cancer study suggests that a conclusion on the lack of human health effect by rBGH can only be made after large-scale studies, which to date, have not been completed.