Food and Sustainability

UC Berkeley Hillel’s Commitment to High-Quality, Sustainable Food Choices

Beginning in 2019, Berkeley Hillel implemented a new sustainability policy in response to the growing crises of our climate, food systems, and animal welfare. We believe that Jewish values compel us to take drastic steps as an institution and to educate our stakeholders about these issues in order to affect change wherever possible. We strive to live by, and empower others to live by, the values of baaal taschit and tzaar baalei chayim — to avoid unnecessary destruction and the suffering of animals wherever we can. 

Berkeley Hillel adheres to the tenets of “reducitarianism,” a belief that, among other things, there is a more substantial benefit in a large segment of the population making gradual changes, rather than only a smaller segment of the same population making radical changes. As an institution influencing people at a crucial developmental period of their lives, Berkeley Hillel seeks to instill lifelong practices, rooted in Jewish values, in those who engage with our program.

Berkeley Hillel is making a change to help people, animals, and the planet, and we’re excited about how these changes are taking effect.

In 2019, we:

  • Committed to exclusively purchasing “Certified Humane” eggs
  • Committed to exclusively purchase Free-Range, Organic, Kosher beef products from Kol Foods
  • Reduced overall meat purchased by 40%
  • Increased plant-based meal options by 50%
  • Increased variety and volume of vegan and gluten-free meal options
  • Introduced reusable plates and silverware to our lobby kitchenette to reduce single-use waste
  • Served multiple 100% plant-based meals

Sample BBQ Menu

BBQ Jackfruit 
Brown Rice Pilaf

Roasted Garlicky Brussel Sprouts
Kale Salad with Quinoa, Cranberries and Lemon vinaigrette
Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
Blended Burgers (50:50 free-range, organic, kosher ground beef and ground mushrooms)
Kol Foods Free-Range, Organic, Kosher Hot Dogs
BBQ Chicken Strips

GREEN= Plant-based menu item
YELLOW= Higher welfare, Free-range, Organic, Kosher Animal Product


Click here to see read the UC Berkeley Hillel Food and Sustainability Guidelines