A UNBC class assignment has turned into more than 1,000 pounds of food donated to charity.
The UNBC Food Recovery Project is a collaboration between students and University of Northern B.C.'s food service providers that collects extra food from the school's new dining hall, preserves it and gives it to the local St. Vincent de Paul Society.
It's a concept developed by former UNBC international studies and northern studies major Shaun Cormier, who received a $2,250 grant from the school's Green Fund to establish the program.
Borne out of a fall 2013 class that required students to do volunteer work and present on it, Cormier and fellow student Maggie Hall were approached by Dr. Matias Margulis who suggested there was funding available for projects like theirs if they continued it further.
Students label, weigh and catalogue all food before it's stored in a special refrigerator for biweekly pickup by a St. Vincent de Paul volunteer.
Rodney Mansbridge, executive chef at UNBC Food Services, said his kitchen already does what it can to minimize waste, but that's inevitable more food will be prepared than is needed.
"The biggest benefit is that is saves us from having to purchase food with our limited funding," said Bernie Goold, local St. Vincent de Paul Society president. The society serves three meals per day on weekdays and two on weekends to an average of 220 to 230 people. "The UNBC donation enhances our lunches and adds a variety of food ingredients that we could not afford to purchase."