A greener cafeteria at UNOG

Wed, 22/01/14

With the beginning of 2014, the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG) saw the implementation of a new catering contract. Preparations for this tender started as early as 2012 with the objective of incorporating a number of green requirements and to make the choice of food more organic and healthy, and at the same time keeping the diverse catering activities at UNOG self-sustainable.

UNOG consulted with the Geneva Green Group, a network of United Nations colleagues across the different organizations in Geneva, and the Sustainable UN Coordinator of UNEP (www.unep.org/dtie). The list of exciting greening options grew quickly and the requirements with the most impact on staff had to be selected. In 2012, a client-satisfaction survey revealed that many staff wanted vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free products, and UNOG, in close cooperation with the new caterer, also introduced fair-trade coffee and biodegradable cups.

What is new?

  • Organic, local or fair-trade food is now included in each menu (“Natura”, vegetarian, “Wellness” and salad bar).
  • A dedicated nutritionist is advising the caterer exclusively on UNOG’s catering activities.
  • Hot drinks served in paper cups are more expensive than those served in mugs.
  • A composter will be installed on UNOG’s premises to recycle food waste. UNOG’s gardeners will utilize the food waste in the Ariana Park.
  • A local association will collect unsold meals for redistribution to the needy.
  • All cleaning products are biodegradable.
  • A joint programme with the City of Geneva to reduce the use of water and electricity will be implemented.
  • The eating area of the cafeteria will be renovated during the course of the contract to make it brighter and more inviting.
  • The Serpent’s bar at the E-building will offer hot food at a newly created fresh pasta corner from summer onwards.

A client-satisfaction survey will also be carried out on an annual basis from now on to gather more first-hand feedback from staff.

Categories: Procurement