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TCU 360

TCU 360

All TCU. All the time.

TCU 360

The TCU School of Music recruits at a booth in the convention center. (@tcumusic on Instagram)
TCU music students attend nation’s largest convention for music educators
By Caleb Gottry, Staff Writer
Published Feb 20, 2024
Members of the TCU Symphony Orchestra performed at the annual TMEA convention on Friday, Feb 9.

Dining services works to become environmentally-friendly

Students who eat at The Main, Deco Deli, Edens or Pond St. Grill have noticed a change in their utensils, straws and to-go containers.The university has decided to take an all-natural approach, using utensils and containers made from organic products.

TCU has switched to all-natural Bio Mass Packaging. The forks, knives and spoons used in the dining halls are now known as Spudware, which is a form of biodegradable cutlery made from 80 percent potato starch and 20 percent soy oil, according to the Bio Mass Packaging flyers distributed in The Main. The straws and to-go containers are made from paper pulp called Bagasseware, which is formulated from plants.

Rick Flores, manager of Dining Services, said the main reason for switching to Bio Mass Packaging was the feedback Dining Services received from students last year. Flores said many students voiced their opinions about wanting to do more for the environment. He said these “earth-friendly” products help the environment because they can break down in 30 days when exposed to sunlight.

While many students may want to do more for the environment, not all are completely satisfied with the new products.

Amanda Diaz, a sophomore secondary education major, said she is displeased with some of the changes.

“The straws are made of paper and they come out in your mouth,” Diaz said. “I’m all for the environment, but the straws are annoying.”

Like Diaz, Kelley Sweatt, a junior early childhood education major, said she is annoyed with the straws but understands the new changes.

“It was weird drinking out of a paper straw, but I think it’s good they’re doing it for the environment,” Sweatt said.

All of the plastic utensils and containers will be replaced by mid-September, but Flores said not all of the biodegradable packing is a definite change.

“We’re still going through the stage of making sure the items do work,” Flores said. “We’re still deciding if they are meeting the students needs and that they’re doing what they’re supposed to be doing.”

Flores said students have yet to respond and he’s not sure if the lack of response is a good thing or a bad thing. He does know, though, this is just the first step for TCU to help clean up the environment.

The new Brown-Lupton Student Center may have something to do with improving the earth by having students eat on china or glass as opposed to take-out, Flores said.

Restaurants such as McDonald’s and Boston Market serve almost all of their foods in plastic containers, which could add up to a lot of waste, Flores said.

“We’re going to change drastically our culture of how we eat from a retail format to an all-you-can-eat format, which means we’re going to help the environment even more,” Flores said. “We’ll go away from retail packing, to students having their meals without the packaging, which takes away all paper products to begin with. That’ll be another help to the environment.

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