Farm and Food
Saint Michael’s is an active participant in the local and resilient food economy. As a small liberal arts college, we have the privilege to think deeply and systemically about the food choices we offer students. As an institution, we recognize the role we play as a strong lever for food system change as a member of the institutional market. Read on to discover how we support student access to fresh, local food.
Farm Program, Farm Stands and CSA
The Saint Michael’s College Farm Program holds a weekly farm stand on the green in front of the Dion Student Center during the Fall Semester (late-August to mid-October). Here, campus community members can see amazing variety of produce, herbs and flowers on full display, chat with Farm Crew Members about how food is grown, where and often pick up a few ideas on how to prepare it in their dorms, apartments and town houses. There’s usually a delicious salsa, jelly, pickle, chutney or herbed butter to snack on while you shop!
In addition to the staffed once weekly farm stand, students, staff and faculty can access farm fresh food 5 days a week at the self-serve farm stand in the Farm Program’s office, Alliot 204 (across the hall from the KnightCard office). The office is open from 9:00-5:00 Monday through Friday. Often but not always a Farm Crew Member will be available for quick questions but the honor system and long hours accommodate the myriad of flexible schedules on campus. Come in, shop, record your items in the log and deposit your funds in the drop box.
The Farm supports a pre-buy CSA model. In the early Fall, members support the farm, its production practices and its values with a $50 buy in. In return, members receive $65 in value good from mid-August until food runs out in early November. The farm Program holds the value and members simply shop the farm stand opportunities described above. In lieu of cash exchange at check out, they simply record their member number. Members track their balance with a cloud-based spreadsheet. 15 slots are available and we hope to grow the program in the future.
All campus farm-based retail food opportunities accept cash, check & KnightCard for student access and convenience.
Intervale Food Hub CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) – Student Shares
Our small campus farm focuses on the production of vegetables, while delicious and bountiful, our partnership with the Intervale Food Hub allows students to complement their vegetable consumption with local dairy, grain, meats and vegetables in the long dark months. Students can buy an Intervale Food Hub CSA share that then gets delivered right to campus each week! To learn more, check out their website: Intervale Food Hub
Dining on Campus & the VT First Initiative
Saint Michael’s food service provider, Sodexo, continually strives to incorporate local products into the main dining hall on campus, the Green Mountain Dining Hall in Alliot. In fact, Sodexo has made a statewide commitment, Vermont First, to support the local food system in the state. Click on the following link to see a map of what local farmers and producers provide food (when available and in season) to Saint Michael’s: Vermont Food Map.
Sodexo continues to be a key partner in increasing access to food from the campus farm for the student body. With the addition of a second hoop house, production of dining hall favorites like tomatoes, salad greens, green beans, and squash is set to take off in Fall 2019. The partnership between Sodexo and the Farm extends beyond one of wholesale sales. Sodexo often sponsors farm events by preparing farm-food for on farm luncheons, sponsors student positions and supports farm operations in cooler months with access to an indoor wash station and prep areas for processed goods.
Other sustainable initiatives that part of campus dining include:
- All seafood in the dining hall is on the Sustainable Seafood Watch list
- Fair trade bananas, coffee and tea are available
- All eggs are cage free
Read more about Campus Dining here.