LuisaEspinosa, Aiming, Linda
TexasChristian University (TCU) offers many facilities to its students andprofessors, focusing on the well-being of the student. Theinstitution would be a much better place if it focused on itsenvironment and people outside the campus. Brown-LuptonUniversity Union(BLUU) is a common place where one can justify how the institutiondoes its best to satisfy the students. Every day, food is left in theconveyor belt of the MarketSquare.Some students throw away food if they do not like it. In this paper,I will examine how paying attention to food waste can help in bettermanagement of the environment, TCU’s budget, and the students’budget.
Ina consumerist world, food waste has become a massive problem now. Thechallenge affects both human welfare and the environment. For a longtime, we focus on issues such as industries, plastics, and cars whenexamining pollution. Various research studies have attributed foodwaste is a contributor to the harmful environmental effects. Foodwaste causes a lot of carbon pollution, which is the main reason forthe greenhouse gas emissions. Food waste from schools, homes, andbusinesses play a role in increasing the carbon pollution in theenvironment. There are organizations that realize the big damage offood waste and try remedies such as food recovery policies. Today,food has become cheap and affordable hence people do not realize thatfood wasting is affecting the environment and humanity. Food costsyou only six percent of total household expenses in an averageAmerican family.
Accordingto Nadya Zhexembayeva’s book, OverfishedOcean Strategy,today’s American family of four throws away anywhere from $1,350 to$2,274 worth of food each year. The statistics show that Americanswaste about $165 billion annually. The FeedingAmerican Network of Food Banksgives eleven meals to people in hunger, with only one dollar,however, one out of seven people in American face hunger. Foodwastage is thus unethical bearing in mind the high number of peoplefacing hunger (Popov, Itoh, and Brebbia 135).
AsTCU students, we live in a very healthy and friendly environment. Thetime we spend in the campus become very cherishing for the students.TCU enrolls around 9,725 students, assuming there are only 1,000freshman students who eat at the BLUU every day. Considering that nAmerican family of four throws away $1,350 to $2,274 worth of foodeach year, TCU freshman students are likely to waste between $337,500to $568,500 worth of food annually. Food waste in the BLUU isimpacting the institutions and its student’s economy. TCU spendshigh amounts of money, buying food, preparing food, and wasting food.The cost of a meal plan varies from $880 to $2,615. Considering TCUmakes these charges from the amount of money spent on buying andpreparing food for students, the cost of a meal plan would decreaseimmensely if they stop buying amounts of food and consider the foodthat is wasted to buy less and charge less.
TCUhas high standards of education and ethics, with great focus on thewelfare of the global community. It should start focusing on thewell-being of not only its students but as the mission statementsays, the citizens on the global community. According to the WorldHealth Organization,“Everyyear, consumers in rich counties waste almost as much food (222million tons) as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa(230 million tons)(United Nations Environment Programme para. 3). It is such statisticsthat need to worry the institution on the effects of food wastage.TCU need to initiate programs that will effectively address theproblem in line with the institution’s mission statement.
Ininitiating the solutions, all stakeholders including students need tojoin hands to reduce food wastage. The studentbody needs to reduce the food waste in the BLUU. The institution cancreate awareness programs regarding the effects of food wastage toenvironment and economy. It should start providing lessons like thealcohol education. Such lessons can be offered during the orientationperiod. Posters and other awareness materials can be put on the BLUUto remind the students to reduce food wastage. These materials willcontinuously remind the students about importance of reducing foodwastage.
Additionally,the institution needs to change the approach they use when servingfood. This will eradicate incidences where students request for highamounts of food, but they do not finish. TCU can change fromself-service to directly serving the students with the food. Theapproach will help in giving the students smaller portions of foodthat they can easily finish hence reduce wastage. The idea will alsohelp the community in Fort Worth, since it will offer jobopportunities to the locals. Most students that have paid for a mealplan prefer to eat at the restaurants surrounding TCU’s campus,arguing that they do not like the food at the BLUU. The practiceshows how students are wasting their money, and how the quality ofthe food in the BLUU could be an issue that TCU can solve the problemby offering different types of foods and better qualities that theconsumers will enjoy. Improving quality will also help reduce wastagewhile attracting many students to eat from the BLUU. It is alsoimportant to consider giving incentives in the form of discounts forthe students who take all the food. Making an incentive to studentsnot waste food at all and eat all the food they get for themselves.Further, the institution can consider fining the students who pollutethe environment through food wastage. Resultant benefits go beyondtaking action in showing the importance of food and how much harmfulit is to waste. The approach will reduce the cost for TCU’s budgeton buying food. It will also reduce students’ budget while payingfor a meal plan. The approach will help the students and theinstitution to focus on initiatives that benefit the environment andthe community outside TCU.
Inconclusion, food waste at the BLUU remains a serious issue thatrequires urgent and appropriate intervention measures. TCU shouldfocus on becoming part of the solution instead of part of theproblem. It is necessary that institution undertake to the spirit ofthe mission statement. Doing so will see TCU creating a betterenvironment for all. It is significantly important for TCU to remindstudents the importance of the food and the actions to take to bepart of the solution such as education about food wasting, a new wayof service, and the charges for the wasting of food in the BLUU. Itis upon all individuals to realize the importance of creating ahealthy environment.
Popov,V, H Itoh, and C A. Brebbia. WasteManagement and the Environment Vi.Southampton: WIT, 2012. Internet resource.
UnitedNations Environment Programme. FoodWaste Facts .2011. 7 December 2015 <http://www.unep.org/wed/2013/quickfacts/>.
Zhexembayeva,Nadya. OverfishedOcean Strategy: Powering Up Innovation for a Resource-Deprived World., 2014. Internet resource.