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Student Center Garden water-fountain.jpg


University Centers is guided by UC San Diego’s Principles of Sustainability and is committed to sustainable practices in day-to-day operations as well as capital improvement projects.


Green Restaurants 

Two Price Center restaurants-- Starbucks and Santorini Grill-- are Green Restaurant Certified by the Green Restaurant Association (GRA). The GRA standards provide a transparent way to measure each restaurant’s environmental accomplishments while providing a pathway for the next steps toward increased environmental sustainability


Student Center Garden

University Centers created and cares for the Student Center Garden, located just below the LGBT Resource Center. The patio garden produces herbs like mint and basil as well as vegetables like zucchini, tomatoes, and lettuce. All harvested produce is donated to the Triton Food Pantry, helping combat food insecurity on campus. Interested Tritons can attend educational workshops to learn more about vegetable gardening. For more information, please email


Green Office Certified

The following offices have been Green Office Certified by UC San Diego Sustainability:

  • Price Center West Level 3 Offices
  • Price Center East, Level 4 Offices
  • The Zone
  • Student Affairs Office



Price Center restaurants composted more than 66,000 pounds of food waste, diverting it from landfills in 2018-2019 academic year; All student union vendors continue to work toward the UC goal of zero waste


Styrofoam Ban

University Centers has prohibited the distribution of polystyrene foam (Styrofoam) in any of its restaurants since 2011.


Eliminating Single Use Plastic

  • Recyclable and/or compostable packaging (including straws and utensils) are preferred for all student union retailers
  • Student union restaurants must adopt an “ask first” policy for single use items such as straws and bags
  • University Centers retail locations are committed to no longer selling single-use plastic water bottles





Sustainable Food Expo  

An annual event--the Sustainable Food Expo happens every fall at Price Center. The event is free and open to all, bringing together sustainably-focused organizations and business with the San Diego Community for a day of learning, exploring, and food-related fun! 



If your organization is interested in hosting a booth at the next Sustainable Food Expo, please read through the Mission Statement below, and check back in September for registration information. 

 Mission Statement:

The UC San Diego Sustainable Food Expo seeks to inform students and the community about sustainable food solutions. The expo presents vendors, best practices and ideas about preserving the environment, nourishing our bodies and enhancing socially just food systems. Topics covered include nutrition, health, gardening, agriculture, food insecurity  and other areas that impact the food chain. We explore relevant challenges and seek to highlight practical solutions.
Meet with local food providers and others who impact food and health policy.  Originally held in conjunction with Food Day celebrations throughout the United States, the Expo has become a favorite UC San Diego tradition, typically held in the Fall harvest season.



Starbucks Sustainability Grant

One to five grants are available each year, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000, to assist UC San Diego students with research or learning projects related to sustainable food production and distribution, resource conservation, or agricultural environmental practices.

Learn More

Starbucks Grant