Certified Level One Green Restaurants®

Based on continuous sustainability efforts, in Fall 2019, Bolton, Oglethorpe, Snelling, the Village Summit, and the Niche (Health Sciences Campus) dining commons were named Certified Level One Green Restaurants®. These locations have met the Green Restaurant Association’s rigorous environmental certification standards. The University of Georgia is proud of the environmental accomplishments that have brought us to this award and we are committed to continuing to improve our environmental practices by implementing new environmental steps in the future.


Dining Services, in partnership with the Facilities Management Division and the Office of Sustainability, has diverted food waste from the landfill since 2014. The dining commons have eliminated all non-compostable items, which allows 100% of food waste to be composted, all dining locations at Tate Student Center compost pre- and post-consumer food waste, and Campus Catering composts all post-consumer food waste. Learn more about our Composting programs.

Trayless Dining

Trayless dining helps reduce waste, conserve water, and save energy. Without trays, less uneaten food is discarded each day. Water and energy are saved by not having to wash trays. UGA's five dining commons have practiced trayless dining since 2015 in partnership with the Office of Sustainability. Learn more about Trayless Dining.

Campus Grown

Part of our sustainability effort includes making sure that we use as many local products as we can. This focus has gotten even closer to home with our expanding projects using produce grown on the UGA campus, such as vertical aeroponic gardens at Oglethorpe Dining Commons. Learn more about Campus Grown projects.


Dining Services has been a long-time campus advocate of environmental sustainability concepts, including recycling. Some of our recycling initiatives include recycling cardboard, glass, plastic, and metal cans in all of our facilities and collecting and recycling pizza boxes at the Niche Pizza Co. through a partnership with the Office of Sustainability. Learn more about our Recycling initiatives.

Reducing Waste

Reducing food waste on campus is a top priority for Dining Services, in partnership with the UGA Office of Sustainability and UGA Facilities Management Division. Tate Student Center's retail dining locations have undergone the most recent waste reduction changes. These locations are now 100% plastic-straw free and have replaced Styrofoam packaging with compostable fiber containers. Learn more about Reducing Waste.

Blended Burgers

UGA Dining Services, with support from the Office of Sustainability, introduced Blended  Burgers at O-House and The Niche (on the Health Sciences Campus) in the spring of 2019. Blended Burgers are a flavorful, sustainable and healthier blend of ­burger comprised of 70 percent beef and 30 percent roasted mushroom. Learn more about Blended Burgers.

Regional Partners

Part of our sustainability effort includes purchasing regional produce and food products when available and using as many local products as we can. A variety of items in the dining commons and markets have ingredients sourced directly from farms in Georgia and bordering states. Learn more about our Regional Partners.


Dining Services is also a major contributor to both the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia and Full Plate. These organizations ensure that our surplus food is distributed to human-service agencies in the Athens area. Learn more about our Donation practices.