Dining hall hosts 150-mile meal

Williams College promotes sustainability by serving local foods to students.

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass.—Mission Park dining hall hosted a 150-mile sustainable food breakfast last Wednesday. The meal boasted local foods raised and grown within a 150-mile radius of the College campus. A variety of foods including Hudson Valley cage-free eggs, East Mountain Farm sausage, Nitty Gritty Flour pancakes, Ioka Farms maple syrup and many other local products, were served to 276 students.

The meal was a successful continuation of the sustainable food initiative prompted by the student groups Real Food Williams and Thursday Nights Grassroots. Begun last year as part of a “No Impact” week, 150-mile meals seek to raise awareness of local sustainable food options and promote the efforts of dining services to reach higher levels of sustainability.

The 150-mile radius is set forth from the Real Food Challenge as a distance most advantageous for promoting the local food economy and reducing the effects of large-scale transportation of produce. The College took up this challenge with the intention of promoting close food sourcing, continuing a familiar relationship with the local community and achieving high levels of sustainability. Dining services has been involved in this initiative for many years and hopes to achieve a level of 20 percent “real food” by 2020 as defined by the Real Food criteria.

Since the inception of the 150-mile meals last year, the process of creating menus and finding locally grown food has become easier with the increased experience of Dining Services, students and faculty. While it is challenging to produce a full meal with only local options during the winter, dining services has actively pursued many different venues and used creativity to create nutritious and filling meals. They have also been able to balance the economic differences that occur due to the higher costs of local products by reducing extraneous items such as the soda machines, imported cereals and store brand breads. While some students were taken aback by the lack of coffee and other usual items at Mission’s breakfast, the meal brought into question the necessity of these items.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

In an effort to boost its competitive advantage, foodservice vendor Aramark is set to buy the Avendra purchasing firm .

The deal, worth $1.35 billion, will give Aramark ownership of the hospitality services company, which was formed more than 15 years ago to combine the buying power of five large hotel chains, including Marriott and Hyatt.

“Combining Avendra’s powerful procurement capability with Aramark’s leading supply chain management expertise will bring increased buying scale and improved service levels to both Avendra’s and Aramark’s customers, while strengthening our...

Ideas and Innovation
onion slices

In an interview with Bon Appetit magazine, Sam Schiffer, line cook at Di Alba in Los Angeles, recommends cutting onions straight into ice-cold water to keep eyes from watering. Submerging the vegetable in water helps eliminate the tear-inducing gas that onions release when cut.

Ideas and Innovation
oversized portions

Here are the trends FSD's Chefs’ Council members wish would go away.

Kale Gluten-free Sriracha Chipotle Microgreens on everything Sous vide cooking Aversion to bread Healthy desserts Vegan diets Lies about local sourcing/organic food Fast food Cupcakes Pumpkin spice Fat-free or low-fat Meatless Mondays Bread cones Rigid child nutrition guidelines Bacon on everything Cajun Doughnuts with over-the-top toppings Oversized portions Fried foods Pinterest
Ideas and Innovation
Frose

Frose, sushi burgers and single-item restaurants are hot topics as of late, according to Forbes, which recently released a list of seven buzzwords in the foodservice world. Here’s what’s trending, in no particular order.

Blended burgers Frozecco and frose Goth food Hemp Single-item restaurants Sushi burger Upcycling

FSD Resources