Cold Beverage Consultative Group

Queen’s Cold Beverage Agreement

On September 1, 2023, Queen’s University signed a five-year Cold Beverage Agreement with Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited to be its cold beverage supplier with an option to extend for an additional five-year term. The agreement expired on August 31, 2023, having been extended for one year due to the impacts of COVID-19 on the contract deliverables over the 2020-21 academic year, when most classes were remote, resulting in reduced activity on campus.

Since 2012, Coca-Cola has offered exclusive cold beverage services to students, staff, faculty, and visitors on campus through various outlets, including residence dining halls, retail food venues, catering services, and vending machines. 

In October 2021, a committee of stakeholders formed the Cold Beverage Consultative Group with membership and student representation as set out below. The group assisted with developing procurement criteria, including preparation of the Request for Proposal (RFP) in Fall 2022, and provided feedback on options for cold beverage supply. To inform the procurement process, the group engaged the campus community through surveying, focus groups, open forums, and feedback review, and participated in proponent evaluation and selection, as applicable.

Project Updates

April, 2024

As part of the execution of the September 2023 new Cold Beverage Agreement, dedicated funding allocations with the agreement include the following:

Annual Indigenous Fund: As of January 2024, a working group of key campus stakeholders was formed to oversee the use of a dedicated Indigenous Fund provided through the University’s Cold Beverage Agreement.  The working groups’ consensus indicated the Fund's best use for 2023-2024 would be to support existing food access initiatives directed by Four Directions to support the implementation of a “Meal Bundle” program teaching Indigenous students how to prepare traditional Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe recipes, while learning the cultural teachings that encompass them. This initiative will help combat the growing concerns with food insecurity on campus.  For further information, please contact Four Directions at

Sustainability Initiatives and Activation Fund:   The Housing and Ancillary Services’ Sustainability Advisory Committee collaborates with a broad range of campus stakeholders to provide input on the dedicated funding use from the Cold Beverage agreement, with feedback from Coca-Cola to provide comparable best practices and what initiatives worked well at other post-secondary institutions. Among supporting proposed initiatives, the Fund will be used to conduct regular waste audits in consultation with the University waste office.  

For further information about this fund or how to participate in discussions related to the use of the dedicated Cold Beverage funding, please contact  

Sustainability Achievement Award: The Financial Aid and Awards office provides access to financial awards so students can focus on their studies, achieve their goals, and prepare to make a positive impact on the world. As a component of these existing supports and in partnership with Coca-Cola, the annual cold beverage Sustainability Achievement Award recognizes an undergraduate student for their environmental volunteer work in combination with academic achievement. For more information on this award or other available supports, please contact 

Queen’s Athletics and Recreation Fund: Queen's Athletics and Recreation offers students, staff, faculty and the Kingston community more than 25,000 opportunities for physical activity, health and wellness per year through a wide variety of programs in camps, aquatics, casual recreation, recreational clubs, fitness and wellness programs and intramurals. Annual funding through the Cold Beverage agreement provides funding for these wellness programs in exchange for the activation of Powerade and Body Armor products on campus. For further information, please contact 

December, 2023

The University has recently signed a five-year agreement with Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited to be its cold beverage supplier. The contract expands the availability of products from a range of suppliers, provides increased funding for sustainability initiatives on campus, includes an Indigenous Initiatives Fund, and continues to direct funding to student wellness initiatives.   

A campus-wide survey deployed by the Cold Beverage Consultative Group identified seven priority criteria for a new agreement: Sustainability, Nutritional Value, Product Quality, Affordability, Social Impact, Locally Sourced, and Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, & Indigeneity.     

Under the agreement, Coca-Cola will provide annual funding to support the University’s ongoing contributions towards advancing UN Sustainability Development Goals, including 4 - Quality Education, 10 – Reducing Inequalities, 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities, and 12 – Responsible Consumption and Production through:    

  • a Sustainability Initiatives and Activation Fund   
  • a new Sustainability Achievement Award program to recognize student achievement in this priority area     
  • a new Indigenous Initiatives Fund    
  • an Athletics Fund   
  • an annual Exclusivity Payment directed to wellness initiatives   

In response to an identified priority to offer more beverage options on campus from locally sourced or niche suppliers, the new agreement allows up to 10% of campus sales to be procured independently, increased from 3% in the previous agreement. Community members with suggestions for local cold beverage products they would like to see on campus can send their recommendations to        

A portion of the funding from the agreement will be used to conduct regular waste audits in consultation with the University waste office.

We welcome feedback from the campus community

July, 2023

Queen's University is in the final stages of contract negotiations with the prospective new cold beverage supplier and expects to complete the process in the next several weeks.

February, 2023

The RFP evaluation process has been completed. Contract negotiations are now under the direction of Procurement Services with the top scoring proponent. Non-Disclosure agreements remain in affect once a formal contract is signed.

January, 2023

The formal Request for Proposal (RFP) open to the public has closed. The evaluation process is underway under the direction of Procurement Services. All Evaluators have signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement and are required to maintain specific details about the potential suppliers confidential.

November, 2022

Following a consultative period that began in October 2021 which has now concluded, a formal Request for Proposal (RFP) has been made public. Currently, the RFP is scheduled to close on December 7, 2022.

June, 2022 

Between February 24, 2022 – April 30, 2022, the Consultative Group surveyed the campus community to help identify what factors are most important when selecting a new cold beverage supplier for the university. The survey was open to all Queen’s University staff, faculty and students with data sampling consisting of 67.25% students, 28.50% staff, and 4.22% faculty. The weighted results indicate that the criteria, in order of priority for consideration in the procurement process of the next cold beverage supplier are as follows: 

  1. Sustainability 
  2. Nutritional Value 
  3. Product Quality 
  4. Affordability 
  5. Social Impact 
  6. Locally Sourced 
  7. Commitment to EDII 

Cold Beverage Consultative Membership Includes: 

  • Two representatives from the Alma Mater Society (Commissioner of Environmental Sustainability and the Social Issues Commissioner)                            
  • Representative from the Society of Graduate & Professional Students 
  • Two representatives from QBACC (Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change) 
  • Executive Director, Housing and Ancillary Services 
  • Director, Business Development and Communications, Student Affairs, Housing and Ancillary Services (Chair) 
  • Manager of Finance, Housing and Ancillary Services 
  • Manager, Wellness and Sustainability, Housing and Ancillary Services 
  • Representative selected from the Campus Foodservice Committee 
  • Representative from Athletics & Recreation 
  • Representative from the Office of the Vice-Provost & Dean of Student Affairs 
  • Representative from the Sustainability Office 
  • Representatives from Strategic Procurement Services (ex-officio) 
  • Member at large representative (vacant)

Expressions of interest to join the Cold Beverage Consultative Group, or general feedback can be shared by emailing


Oct 2, 2020 10:15 am