Aramark is a 14.6 billion-dollar Fortune 500 company that provides food services in education, healthcare, business, leisure, and more. They run 72 food operations across Arizona State University's (ASU) campuses. The company has internal commitments to environmental sustainability and health and wellness respectively outlined in, "Green Thread," and "Healthy for Life 20 By 20." ASU follows the sustainability guidelines presented by The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). In recognition of the negative environmental effects of animal agriculture, the AASHE guidelines have recently changed, which requires Aramark to source more plant-based products. On March 14th, Aramark and I hosted, “Eat Well, Live Well,” ASU’s first large event to celebrate plant-based diets and sustainability. The event had 3 objectives: to educate and excite event-goers about plant-based diets and sustainability, to alter perceptions, and to stimulate behavior change. Before entering the event, event-goers (largely students) were prompted to fill out a survey that measures their perceptions on the benefits and barriers to consuming a plant-based diet. A post-event survey was distributed to measure the same event-goers’ change in knowledge, perceptions, and behavior. The post-event survey results indicate that, “Eat Well, Live Well,” motivated 59% of event-goers to reduce their consumption of animal-products. The post-event survey results are used to understand whether the event met its objectives. This project takes a community based social marketing (CBSM) approach to fostering sustainable behavior within the student body, as it uses students’ perceived barriers and benefits to develop a compelling case to Aramark on how they should offer and promote plant-based diets on all of ASU campuses.
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