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Bon Appétit Management Company plans to implement the ReThink Disposable program campus-wide at the University of San Francisco, after a successful pilot program at its Market Café saved more than $150,000 in disposable foodware costs by eliminating more than two million items with no additional labor cost.

The cafe is the hub of campus eating, and is open from 7am-9pm throughout the 335-day school year. It conducts an average of 5,000 transactions per day, with the bulk of service during the lunch rush from 11am–1pm. At the café, Bon Appétit is committed to sourcing local, fresh ingredients
free from animal cruelty and antibiotics, and the company also procures sustainably grown produce from suppliers who are supportive of workers’ rights.

Packaging practices prior to ReThink Disposable:

  • 6,464,304 disposable foodware items purchased
  • $340,208 in disposable foodware cost
  • 106,953 pounds of waste requiring sorting, hauling, and processing
  • 44.77 metric tons of Greenhouse Gas emissions generated

Recommendations implemented:

  • Offering a reusable cup for the water stations
  • Providing a reusable bowl in place of two different sizes of disposable salad bowls and lids
  • Reducing disposable cutlery and prioritizing reusable forks, knives, and spoons
  • Using bulk dispensers for sweeteners, salt and pepper, unwrapped straws, and toothpicks
  • Minimizing napkin use by placing all napkins in two central locations
  • $0.25 charge on disposables to incentivize dining in on reusable food ware

The Bottom Line:

No additional labor required
Pilot changes made permanent
Bon Appétit has plans to implement ReThink Disposable’s recommendations campus wide at all Bon Appétit USF campus locations

2,607,519 pieces of disposable packaging reduced per year
$157,883 in net savings
26,926 pounds of waste eliminated annually

We’re a large operation, and the details can sometimes get lost. But the knowledgeable and supportive ReThink team helped us significantly reduce our paper costs by more than $150,000 each year...Those are numbers you can’t ignore, and we’re now looking to roll the program out across the campus.

Micah Cavolo, Executive Chef, Bon Appétit Management Company at USF

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