Paper receipts will soon be a thing of the past at University of Wisconsin dining halls, as the university has announced a new initiative that it taking transactions in a paperless direction.
Per a report from the Badger Herald, the initiative is some two years in the making following a student-led solution to rid dining halls of paper receipts. Now, UW Housing and Wisconsin Union Dining Services will only print receipts for credit card transactions, with all others upon request.
The change will be significant as in just one week, the university prints an estimated 100,000 receipts across the housing dining division alone, says Julie Luke, Wisconsin’s associate director of dining and culinary services for University Housing. According to Luke, UW spent approximately $36,000 each year on receipt paper — a figure that is expected to drop $6,000 to $7,000, following the new paperless initiative.
Per the report, students often threw away their receipts or left them on their trays when they left the dining hall. Under the old system, students were always asked if they wanted their receipts, but they rarely kept them. The student group behind the initiative studied the receipts to first ensure they were Bisphenol A (BPA) free, then considered the options of eliminating receipts or issuing electronic receipts.
It was after the student group issued a survey to students soliciting feedback regarding the paper receipts that university dining was able to make moves on the initiative. Luke ultimately presented the survey data and findings to the university board who, in turn, approved a pilot program to be implemented at one of the campus dining halls. Following a successful trial, the university approved the project for all Wisconsin dining halls.
Following the success with campus dining halls, the student group says the next step is to try to get campus unions on board and further cut back on paper receipts on campus.