Food & Dining

student getting food from buffet line

Butler is committed to sustainable, local, and ethically-sourced food. Below are some of our most notable efforts toward making our campus dining as green as possible.

Dining Services

​Bon Appetit, which operates dining services at Butler, focuses on sustainability and wellness as an integral part of their mission. Below are several Bon Appetit sustainability commitments:

  • Supporting local agriculture by sourcing at least 20 percent of every dollar spent on food from within 150 miles of campus
  • Striving to serve only seafood that meets Seafood Watch® sustainability guidelines for commercial buyers
  • Reducing antibiotic use in farm animals 
  • Serving rBGH-free milk 
  • Switching to cage-free shell eggs (2005) and cage-free liquid eggs
  • Tackling food’s role in climate change
  • Addressing farmworkers’ rights through Fair Trade products and local food purchasing
  • Sourcing to humanely raised ground beef 
  • Phasing out pork raised with gestation crates 
  • Banning plastic straws and stirrers company wide 

Bon Appetit also offers BlueGo, a takeaway meal option for busy students and employees who are unable to stop to eat in the cafe. Every student, faculty, and staff member with a Butler ID is automatically enrolled in the program and allotted two free eco-friendly reusable containers to take with them on the go instead of using single-use products. Containers can be returned to Atherton Marketplace, ResCo Café, Trip’s Corner Market, and to vending receptacles located in the lobby of Irvington House and Fairview Community Room.

Composting and Food Waste Reduction

Butler contracts with Earth Mama Compost to compost pre-consumer (back of house) food waste at Atherton Dining Hall. Approximately 800 pounds of food waste is hauled weekly.

Since 2022, Butler has donated 8,514 lbs of food to local organizations, recycled 29,754 lbs of cooking oil, and grown over 6,000 lbs of fresh produce on campus.