Blog: Farms

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The team members at Albion College in Albion, MI, were ready to focus on expanding their Farm to Fork program. Midwest Fellow S.K. Piper spent a few days there teaching the team how to enroll Farm to Fork vendors.

As a company, we rely on third party certifications to assure ourselves and our guests that the commitments we make are meaningful and are being met. When I heard that Bon Appétit chefs at Johns Hopkins University had started sourcing Certified Humane chicken from Murray’s Chicken, I jumped at the chance to learn more about what the certification means for the well-being of the chickens, our health and the environment.

Bon Appétit believes that making a difference in the lives of others—one that pays dividends long past the holiday season — is the best gift we can give. This year’s beneficiary is the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA).

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I knew I had to visit Pure Country Pork after learning it was the first sustainable hog operation in the United States to be certified by Food Alliance under its stricter guidelines of no farrowing crates or gestation stalls. Plus, since Bon Appétit committed last year to phasing out all pork raised using gestation crates by 2015, I knew I needed to talk to some experts to better understand the significance of this commitment.

The drought that struck the United States this year stunted growth of field corn and soy, and as a result, 2013 will be the first time in 38 years where annual beef, pork, and chicken output all decline. We need a resilient food system that can cope with a changing climate and unpredictable conditions such as this drought. How are we going to get there?

Food Day is an annual nationwide celebration of healthy, affordable, and sustainable food, and a movement to create more of it. This Thursday, October 24, Bon Appétit locations all across America will proudly celebrate Food Day and its five principles. We’re encouraging our guests to get involved by growing some of their own food, and if they’re students, encouraging them to join Campus Farmers!