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How Arizona State University cut pre- AND post-consumer food waste

By Leanpath  ///  September 20, 2018


The five dining halls on Arizona State University’s Tempe campus turn out close to 12,000 meals per day. They had tracked food waste manually before adopting LeanPath in February 2017. ASU is also using LeanPath's post-consumer waste tracker, Spark.

"LeanPath is a lot easier than manual tracking. Easier than we anticipated,” says Aramark foodservice director Kirby Lannom. “I thought it would be difficult to get employees to buy in and use it, but it didn’t take any time.”

Arizona State University's Path to Success

Focus on post-consumer waste.

ASU Tempe uses Spark, LeanPath’s post-consumer waste tracking floor scale and public-facing monitor. Plate waste is weighed and tracked on the monitor. ASU has gone further, posting an attendant by the monitor. They learn why students are tossing food, and often make adjustments to prep mid-shift, like putting sauce on the side or adjusting cooking time. They've cut plate waste by 40 percent.

Keep food waste top of mind.

Lannom and general manager Sara Royce convene weekly meetings with dining hall leaders to review food waste data. “The biggest thing is asking how we could have done things differently,” says Royce.

Repurpose trim waste.

ASU implemented a rigorous protocol for repurposing. For instance, tomato and onion trim go into soups. Water is infused with citrus trim.

Make less.

The Tempe kitchens put more focus on batch cooking. Aramark's food production system allows quantities to be adjusted, which makes prep easier.


For more on how Arizona State University leverages LeanPath technology to prevent food waste
read the full case study here!

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