Our Initiatives

Our Mission and Values

Denver Dining by Sodexo values strong relationships that are built upon honesty and trust. As a member of our community, it is our mission to tell you:

  • where our food comes from
  • who it comes from, and
  • how it got here

By sourcing responsible food from our trusted partners, we prepare food you can feel good about.

We feel that University of Denver students are conscientious consumers that make informed decisions about their day to day food choices. In accord, Denver Dining values:

Responsible Sourcing: We advocate local and sustainable foods systems by prioritizing Real Food Challenge requirements in our purchasing decisions. It’s our role to explain our purchasing decisions. Denver Dining practices responsible sourcing for the food that is served on DU’s campus.

Our Relationships: We believe in the importance of transparent supply chain dynamics. Therefore, Denver Dining educates students about its strong supply chain relationships that include our employees, farmers, producers, distributors and processors/manufactures.

Food You Can Feel Good About: We pride ourselves in using scratch cooking techniques that features the natural flavors of the quality products we purchase.

Food Maven

FoodMaven sells high-quality local, oversupplied and imperfect food from distributors, manufacturers and producers to restaurants and institutional kitchens at a significant discount. They leverage an efficient online marketplace, big data optimization technology, and an agile logistics model.
They then make sure it gets sold, donated or sent to environmentally conscious alternatives.
In short, FoodMaven is good for profits, good for people and good for the planet.

Sustainable Food Policy

DU and Sodexo have come up with a new Food Sustainability Policy.  It includes meeting goals of 30% purchasing by 2025, including offering 40% local food options on our catering menus.  The purchasing will follow closely with the AASHE guidelines.
Other features focus on culturally representative menus, educational training for employees and students, labeling, waste reduction and waste diversion, recycling, health and wellness, and community involvement with measurement processes.
Click here to read the policy in full, and learn more about our sustainability efforts.

Real Food Challenge

In Spring 2014, Denver Dining became a signatory of DU’s Real Food Challenge Commitment to purchase 20% local, fair, ecologically sound or humane food, what is called ‘Real Food’, by 2020. This commitment became a reality through the collaboration between DU’s Center for Sustainability, Students for Sustainable Food, Denver Dining by Sodexo and University of Denver’s Administration. Although having 20% Real Food by 2020 is an important goal for Denver Dining, we want to bring you Real Food Now! That is why it’s Denver Dining’s goal is to reach 19% Real Food by the end of the 2018-2019 school year! 

To see and taste what we are talking about, look for the Real Food Label throughout the Dining Halls

We believe that Pioneers care about where their food comes and how it is prepared. Centennial Dining Hall and Nelson Dining Hall are dedicated to preparing food you can feel good about, featuring responsibly sourced ingredients within our classic comfort foods to international dishes. Many of our responsibly sourced ingredients are classified as ‘real’ food that is local, fair, humane and/or ecologically sound. Continually increasing our use of ‘real’ food is part of our Real Food Challenge Commitment

Featured ‘real’ food items are:
  1. Boulder Organic Ice Cream
  2. Frontiere and Aspen Ridge Beef
  3. Abbotsford Farms Cage-Free Eggs
  4. Raquelitas Tortillas
  5. Pappardelles Pasta
  6. Polidori Sausages
  7. Continental Sausage Brats
  8. Harvest Moon Baking Company
  9. Keen One Quinoa
  10. Corto Olive Oil

Click here for more more information about the Real Food Challenge.
To get involved with DU’s student run RFC chapter, message DU’s Student for Sustainable Food Group’s Facebook page.

Vegan Meals

At least 19 Vegan Meals are offered each week in the resident dining locations on campus, reducing the environmental impact of serving meat.

Xprss Nap

100 % Recycled napkins


We are trayless at both dining halls, which reduces the amount of water and detergent used in the cleaning process. 


We use the Apex by EcoLab dishwashing system, which helps reduce water & packaging

Composting Recycling

We use 100% compostable consumer products throughout retail including coffee cups, lids, straws & to-go boxes
We are working with the University to use 100% recycled consumer products throughout retail
We utilize Tri-Bin parody waste bins, clearly labeled for Recycle, Compost & Landfill
We allow patrons to bring their own reusable mug
We banned polystyrene (Styrofoam) in our operations on campus
We offer reusable DU Green grocery bags for use in C-store locations on campus
We participate in pre-consumer composting at Centennial Hall, Nelson Hall, Nagel Hall, and the Ritchie Center
We participate in post-consumer composting at Centennial Hall and Nelson Hall (resident dining locations)

Fair Trade Coffee

Our retail operations offer Fair Trade, Organic, Rain Forest Certified and bird friendly coffees throughout locations on campus by serving Aspretto Coffees & Numi Teas.

Local Suppliers

We currently purchase locally grown & produced foods from farmers throughout Colorado & include seasonal produce in dishes throughout the year. We purchase locally processed milk & dairy products Meadow Gold, which are antibiotic and rBGH/rBST free.