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Sustainable Food and Drink

We have a range of policies and initiatives in place to make food at King's more sustainable. We are a member of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, are a certified Fairtrade University, and embed sustainability into all areas of our catering operations. The King's Food team have increased the number of plant-based and vegetarian options available, opened a plant-based cafe at Bush House, introduced a 20p levy on disposable cups (which is put into a Sustainable Projects Fund open to students and staff), and actively seek out local and sustainable suppliers. 

Our Sustainable Food Policy, as well as our Fairtrade Policy, set out our committments to sourcing sustainably, protecting the environment, and treating our staff fairly. 

You can read more about some of our initiatives below. 


Sustainable Restaurant Association

King's Food is a member of the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), and takes part in its Food Made Good rating. 

This sets out a 14 step framework for continual improvement on sourcing, society and the environment. In 2018, we received one star from the SRA, with an overall score of 59%. In 2019, we achieved our second star, with an overall rating of 68%. There was no rating carried out in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on the hospitality industry. In 2022, we received three stars from the SRA, with an overall score of 80%. This represents a 12% increase since our last report. To read the detailed report provided with our rating, click on the 'Progress' image to the right. 


Fairtrade University

King's and KCLSU have been awarded Fairtrade University status. Progress on our Fairtrade University programme can be found here. 

We hold a Fairtrade and Sustainable Food Steering Group meetings at least once per term, and any student or staff members are welcome and actively encouraged to attend. If you are interested in attending, please contact us at We are part of the NUS and Fairtrade Foundation's Fairtrade University Scheme, and have been re-certified under the new scheme in 2020. 


Reducing Catering Waste

To reduce waste, we also encourage students and staff to use reusable coffee cups and water bottles. Discounts are available for the use of reusable cups, and biodegradable reusable water bottles are now available from King's Food. Water fountains, providing free drinking water, are available throughout campuses, and at King's Food outlets - locations can be found on the maps on the King's Mobile App as well as KCLSU. King's Food is also committed to tackling food waste through it's 50@50 initiative and is acting to reducing single use plastics in campus restaurants and cafes.

We have launched a Sustainability Project Fund with the money generated from a levy on single-use disposable coffee cups. Details of what the project fund can be spent on is available in the Sustainable Project Fund Guidance and Selection Criteria document.


Food Waste Recycling through anaerobic digestion

We have introduced separate food waste collections across the university, which helps our recycling rate as well as keeping the dry-mixed recycling (DMR) clean and dry.

Through our waste contractor Simply Waste Solutions, we send food waste collected from our catering outlets, halls of residences and office kitchens to an Anaerobic Digestion (AD) plant. This breaks down the food in special digestion tanks, and produces gas which is burnt in a generator to produce electricity.

See more about Anaerobic Digestion here. 


King's Community Garden

A community garden, open to all students and staff, has been set up by Sustainability Champion Oli Austen at Guy's Campus. The space is located behind the Henrietta Raphael House, and includes a number of growing beds for vegetables and herbs. 

More information on the garden is available in this feature. For students and staff who would like to get involved, there are regular gardening sessions run. You will need to join an introductory session, and will then be able to book a slot for a gardening session (booking is currently required to ensure social distancing). 




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