Food & Drink
Sustainable cooking for 25,000 guests and tastes? Not so easy! Our university catering has set clear guidelines for this, but never loses sight of the customers' wishes, e.g. by conducting surveys. For more sustainability in university catering, a special working group has been formed that looks for new products, trends and solutions and implements them.
Products from the region
A central quality management system places sustainability in the foreground as early as the purchasing stage. Wherever possible, we work with regional suppliers. This means, among other things, that bread and baked goods are supplied by local bakeries at all locations.
Meat from particularly species-appropriate animal husbandry
As often as possible, we offer meat from particularly poor animal husbandry in our refectories, which is supplied to us by Neuland. This is indicated on the menu by the green heart. The farmers who work with Neuland have committed themselves to keeping their animals according to very special standards. Pigs, cattle and poultry, for example, are fed exclusively with species-appropriate and local fodder that may neither be genetically modified nor mixed with performance-enhancing additives. In addition, the farms refrain from mass livestock farming and instead rely on sufficient fresh air and sufficient outdoor space.
When selecting our fish, we follow the WWF's fish guide. Our ecotrophologists regularly check the assortment according to these guidelines. In this way, we want to make a contribution to counteracting the overfishing of the world's oceans and the associated effects on people and the environment. Our partner is Germany's largest supplier of fish and seafood, the Deutsche See company.
Fair trade coffee
Our coffee is fairly traded. The Fairtrade seal ensures that smallholder cooperatives in the growing countries (e.g. Colombia, Bolivia or Ethiopia) receive fixed minimum prices and long-term trading relationships under fair conditions.
Vegan and vegetarian dishes
According to our guest survey, 15% of our guests eat vegetarian and 8% vegan. In the past year, we have expanded our vegan and vegetarian offer and also want to focus more on meat-free dishes in the future.
In 2020, our canteen at the HBK in Braunschweig was awarded as a vegan-friendly canteen for the third time in a row. The animal rights organisation PETA awarded three out of five possible stars and praised the varied and consistent vegan menu. read more
We have introduced special labelling for sustainable products in our merchandise management system.
The new menu line "Klimaessen" entered the test phase in February 2020. The dishes in the line are put together on the basis of a climate-friendly catalogue of criteria. more about "Klimaessen"
Several Mensa action days dealt with the topic of sustainability, e.g. on World Vegan Day or the Greenpeace Sustainability Days. For the "Forest Air" campaign, 10 cents of every dish sold was donated to NABU.
Sustainable waste management
The food is produced in batches so that the supply can be adapted to demand in a resource-saving way.
Food waste is disposed of by the Refood company and thus still used for biogas plants, for example.
The range of reusable cups for hot drinks has been expanded - so guests can use our deposit-free cups at many locations. Disposable paper cups are only available for a surcharge of 30 cents and the plastic lid only on request.
Where possible, use of reusable bonnets for roll containers
Replace PET bottles with glass bottles in our beverage range.
Recup and Rebowl avoid waste in the to-go business. A climate-neutral box made of sugar cane is available as a disposable solution for food.