Kansas State University Farm-to-Fork Program
Dining Services has long recognized the importance of supporting the Kansas economy by purchasing from local and nearby producers. Over the last several years, our Farm-to-Fork program has grown to include a sustained-purchasing relationship with the following vendors:
Weber Hall Meat Sales, Kansas State University
All hamburger patties, sausage links, steaks, beef roasts, fajita meat, and other products (when available) are purchased from Weber Hall. Weber Hall is a USDA-inspected facility operated by the Department of Animal Sciences at KSU. It provides work experiences and training in meat fabrication and processing to students majoring in animal sciences. The amount of meat purchased annually averages about 63,000 pounds.
Call Hall Dairy, Kansas State University
All fluid milk, served daily to students and used in a multitude of from-scratch-prepared recipes, is purchased from the USDA-inspected milk-processing plant at Call Hall. Also a university entity, Call Hall provides opportunities for students interested in food science and dairy processing. A special flavor of Call Hall ice cream is featured regularly in the dining centers for “Call Hall Ice Cream Tuesday.” The amount purchased annually averages about 38,000 gallons of fluid milk and 900 gallons of ice cream.
Barbra Flores, Manhattan, Kansas
Our Kansas climate makes it impossible to purchase local produce, year-round. However, Dining Services has partnered with local grower, Barbra Flores, to provide fresh, seasonal produce during the summer and fall months. Produce purchased June through November includes zucchini, yellow squash, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, peppers, cucumbers, cantaloupe, watermelon, acorn squash, pumpkins, and gourds. In addition to these items being served almost daily, they are also featured in a “locally-grown educational dinner" so that students may get a better appreciation for the freshness and flavor achieved when buying locally.
Cereal Food Processors, McPherson, Kansas
Dining Services is renowned for our made-from-scratch bakery products. The high quality of these baked goods is made possible by starting with high-quality flours from Kansas-grown wheat and milled locally in McPherson, Kansas, by Cereal Food Processors. Our annual purchases average 73,000 pounds of flour.
In addition to the above purchasing channels, we purchase local items as they become available throughout the year. In the past these purchases have included lamb from Parideaz Farm, owned by local-producer Rhonda Janke, and on occasion, apples--when the local crop is bountiful.
Our future endeavors to support sustainable purchasing include building a stronger relationship with the college of Agriculture by partnering with the student-run farm.
Our efforts to support and encourage sustainability are not overshadowed by our continued commitment to food safety. Before local goods are procured, Dining Services management staff visit with growers and tour operations to insure the food is grown and harvested using practices that follow food safety principles.