As part of the Winona State University-Community Partnership Sustainable Food Project and WSU Family Weekend, campus dining services held “A Taste of Southeast Minnesota” Saturday, Oct. 17. The dinner promoted local farms that WSU dining services regularly purchase produce from. The dinner was held in the Jack Kane Dining Center and Lourdes Dining Hall. It was open to the public and cost $7.50 plus tax. The “Taste of Southeast Minnesota” menu included: organic roast beef
The meal highlighted foods that come from farmers working within 40 miles of campus, which results in a smaller carbon footprint because food grown close to home takes less fuel to make it onto the dinner plate. In addition, locally grown foods are often fresher and readily available in season. Cafeterias at WSU provide a variety of foods from local farms every day.
The eight diversified family farms contributing to the dinner integrated grass-fed livestock, hormone-free and non-therapeutic antibiotics, and other sustainable farming practices. Farms included:
As far as being cost efficient, “Of course local is less expensive in the long run because it is a fresher product that has traveled very few miles, without the fuel charges and carbon emissions from distant sources,” said Spaeth.
WSU’s dining services Web site offers a variety of healthy information (www.dineoncampus.com/winona). Nutrition tools such as a chart, journal, and calculator aide in creating a more balanced diet.
“A Taste of Southeast Minnesota” was sponsored by the WSU-Community Partnership Sustainable Food Project committee, with assistance from the Land Stewardship Project, Bluff Country Co-op and Chartwells Food Service.