As part of Wesleyan’s sustainability efforts, the Wesleyan Student Association Dining Committee removed all trays from the Usdan Marketplace in 2009. The “traylessness” initiative is one way Wesleyan is working to reduce food waste at the university.
For the third year in a row, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded Wesleyan with a Regional Food Recovery Achievement Certificate for its efforts reducing and diverting food waste. Wesleyan is among 26 organizations and institutions to receive the honor in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine.
This also is the third year Wesleyan has participated in the EPA’s New England Food Recovery Challenge.
“These organizations are showing that protecting the environment, saving money and feeding the hungry can go hand in hand,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “It’s true year-round, but especially important to keep in mind during the holidays when family and friends gather to enjoy celebratory meals, that our food should feed people and not landfills.”
According to Wesleyan’s Sustainability Director Jennifer Kleindienst, Wesleyan continues to improve its compost-to-trash ratio is Usdan’s dining facilities. “This is due to a number of factors, the best I can see is improved understanding of what is/isn’t compostable and switching to all compostable disposable products in dining locations,” Kleindienst said. “We’ve been doing a lot to reduce food waste and our compost interns and Eco Facilitators have been busy talking to fellow students about what is/isn’t compostable and how they can play a role.”
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On Sept. 29, Wesleyan hosted the annual Eat Local Challenge. This one-day only event challenged the Bon Appétit Management Company staff to create a midday meal entirely from products and ingredients harvested within a 150-mile radius of the campus. The meal included produce, meat, fish and other ingredients from local farmers, ranchers, food crafters and fishermen.
The lunch menu incorporated items such as corn on the cob from Horse Listener’s Orchard in Ashford, Conn. and clams and mussels provided by Ipswich Seafood in Ipswich, Mass. Kenian’s Grist Mill’s fried haddock from Yuscabog, R.I. and Szawlowski Farms’ potatoes from Hartfield, Mass. combined to give Wesleyan students a tasty fish and chips option in addition to the plethora of other choices such as clam chowder, beef burgers, crispy blue cornmeal cakes, apple cider marinated pork and tomato bisque.
About 20 farms, ranches and other companies werer represented throughout the lunch menu, and each product from the different companies added a new and unique flavor to the 2015 Eat Local Challenge.
Photos of the Eat Local Challenge are below: (Photos by Will Barr ’18. Story by Fred Willis ’19)
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Wesleyan is working to provide a safer experience for students with food allergies in every aspect of college life.
This month, Wesleyan was one of 12 colleges and universities across the country selected to take part in a new College Food Allergy pilot program being carried out by Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE). The program strives to help colleges and universities provide a safer experience for students with food allergies and offers schools “gold-standard recommendations and evidence-based resources needed to effectively manage food allergy, a potentially life-threatening disease.”
Associate Dean of Student Academic Resources Laura Patey has been instrumental in bringing this program to Wesleyan, and she answered questions about it.
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On Sept. 23, Wesleyan celebrated the 15th anniversary of Bon Appétit’s Farm to Fork program during the annual Eat Local Challenge.
Bon Appétit, Wesleyan’s campus dining provider, served a menu with all local ingredients. All food — including produce and meat — came from farms or suppliers within a 150 radius of campus.
The menu included New England clam chowder, fried haddock and chips, clam bake, roasted pork, BBQ seitan with rosemary potatoes and mushrooms, wood-fired pizza, steamed potatoes and corn, farmhouse salad and strawberry and blueberry crisp for dessert.
Students also voted for their favorite farm. The winner, announced next week, will receive a $5,000 grant from Bon Appétit Management Company.
Photos of the event are below: (Photos by Olivia Drake)
Watch a FOX CT newscast of the event here.
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The Wesleyan community celebrated the eat-local movement on Eat Local Challenge Day Sept. 24. Wesleyan’s Dining Services and several local vendors provided meals made entirely from local ingredients harvested within 150 miles of the university.
The menu included New England clam chowder, fried haddock and fresh cut french fries, whole spit roast pig with cranberry chutney, New England clam bake with steamer clams, corn and potatoes, vegan seitan hash, salad made from Long Lane Farm produce, wood fired pizza, blueberry and strawberry crisp, ice cream, apple cider, coffee and soda.
Vendors included Pierce Brothers Coffee Roasters from Greenfield, Mass.; Sid Wainer & Son Specialty Foods from New Bedford, Mass.; Dole & Bailey Northeast Family Farms from Woburn, Mass.; Horse Listeners Orchard from Ashford, Conn.; Jake’s Ice Cream from Nashua, N.H.; and Avery Soda from New Britain, Conn.
Photos of the event are below. (Photos by Hannah Norman ’16)
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