Butterflyweed at Eagle Bluff

FoodWISE: Food Waste in Schools Elimination Program

FoodWISE stands for our Food Waste ISchools Elimination program. The goal of Eagle Bluff's FoodWISE program is to eliminate cafeteria food waste through sound educational and sustainable ecological practices at Eagle Bluff and in a traditional school setting.

The program accomplishes this goal in three ways:


  • Serving meals with little to no packaging on reusable dinnerware.
  • Educating students about their food choices and offering incentives for waste reduction efforts.
  • Composting food waste.

At Eagle Bluff:

Each group who stays at Eagle Bluff participates in our FoodWISE program and is given a presentation on the impact of food waste as well as a goal for food waste during their stay. This goal is based on 5% of the the group's size. For example, a group of 100 is given a cap of 5 pounds of food waste per meal. In order to give students more control over their food waste, students and adults are encouraged to decide their own portions by telling our food service staff if they'd like to just "try" a small amount of one of the dishes or if they would not like any of a particular dish. We also offer a salad bar and a chance to go back through the serving line for seconds if available.


Groups are given their own food waste cart in order to collect food they don't eat and their waste is weighed and recorded at each meal. If a school remains under its goal they may earn a spot on our Golden Clean Plate Award and/or points toward the Eagle Eye Conservation Award. What little food that is wasted is either composted in our Vermicomposter (Indoor Worm Composter) or sent to our Compost Greenhouse and added to tumbler composters. To find out more about how Eagle Bluff converts the Dining Hall food waste into compost visit our Sustainability Page. Visit our Sustainability page »

At School:

Every school is encouraged to implement this program in their school. To make that happen, Eagle Bluff provides a comprehensive guide to setting up a waste reduction program at school, classroom activities, as well as an incentive program for schools that begin a FoodWISE program.

Become a FoodWISE School
Download the Get FoodWISE! mini guide »
Download COMPOSTING-themed activities »
Download WASTE-themed activities »
Want help starting a FoodWISE program in your school?
Contact the Eagle Bluff Education staff at:

Initial support for the FoodWISE Waste Reduction and Composting Program was provided by:

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency - Waste Reduction Grants Program

Unity Avenue Foundation

Elmer L and Eleanor J Andersen Foundation