Taking a fresh look at sustainability

Subway looks to reduce environmental impact through sustainability initiatives

Q&A with Don Fertman, Chief Development Officer, Subway

How is Subway helping colleges reduce waste?
Our sustainability practices align with the efforts of forward-thinking colleges and universities to be good stewards of the environment. At the University of Florida, we worked with both the university and our partner, Aramark, to eliminate plastic bags about four years ago. As part of the transition to paper bags, our supply chain partner identified a paper bag supplier to facilitate paper bag sourcing for additional university locations.

U of F also composts pre- and post-consumer food waste and heavily promotes reusable cups, as do many of our other campus locations. Also, we recently partnered with Cornell University’s business school to take part in its MBA in Sustainable Global Enterprise immersion program in which students developed recommendations to reduce waste in our franchise-owned restaurants.

Talk about your commitment to alleviate hunger and support local communities.
Since 2016, we have donated the monetary equivalent of over 26 million meals globally through our partnership with Feeding America, our World Sandwich Day promotion, and a variety of other food donation initiatives. For example, as part of our global convention in Toronto this past summer, we packed 750 box meals and donated them to the North York Harvest Food Bank—in addition to providing 1,000 pounds of food to local shelters in the Toronto area. In Argentina, we’re piloting a program with a United Nations agency dedicated to eliminating poverty and hunger in rural areas.

We are also committed to purchasing local and seasonal produce, from local farmers and suppliers wherever possible, to serve in our restaurants. In Latin America, we work with Acceso El Salvador, an agribusiness that trains the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Good Agricultural Practices to hundreds of smallholder farmers to improve their agricultural productivity and increase their incomes. We source high-quality, traceable produce while supporting job creation and boosting the local economy.

“Since 2016, we have donated the monetary equivalent of over 26 million meals globally.”

How does Subway help colleges and universities improve their community and environmental impact?
Social responsibility is important to our guests and franchise owners, and in partnership with colleges and universities, we work together on it.
For years, we have been using recycled materials in everything from our napkins to hot cups to salad bowls. Our University of California, Santa Barbara location uses certified compostable salad bowls.

We take part in composting at the University of Washington; and, at the University of California, San Francisco, we work with the university to serve only nonsugar-based drinks. At UCLA, we have our first LEED Gold certified restaurant, which makes the whole operation environmentally friendly.

For more information, please visit subway.com/en-US/AboutUs/SocialResponsibility/OurPlan