Hampshire College's Healthy Food Transition is changing the enterprise of producing, preparing, consuming, and managing food on campus. Food is used as a means to teach students, communicate values, experiment with new models to solve problems, influence our peers, and serve our community.
As one of the very few liberal arts institutions with a working farm, Hampshire’s Farm Center has been the focus of academic courses for students across the Five College Consortium and individual student research for over 30 years. Our Farm Center also supplies vegetables to our dining services and to over 800 people in the fall through CSA shares, as well as freshly produced greens throughout the winter, and meat, honey, and maple syrup throughout the year.
In pursuit of Hampshire's 100% Local Food Challenge, our dining service provider builds its menus around fresh, local food. Bon Appetít sources produce and dairy from over 15 local farms and purchases approximately 75 of the Hampshire College Farm’s CSA shares, in addition to meat, honey, and maple syrup. Through Hampshire’s Sustainable Food Purchasing Guide, the College has specific guidelines to strive toward when procuring food that minimizes negative impacts on the environment; strengthens connections within communities; and supports the health, human rights, and economic security of the people producing, preparing, and eating the food.
We are in the early phase of developing a Center for New England Food and Agriculture, to be located at the Hampshire Farm. Using the College’s land, curricular innovation, and academic and farming expertise, the center will be a collaborative hub for members of the agricultural community and for the Five College consortium. Hampshire has received two grants totaling nearly $300,000 from the Lydia B. Stokes Foundation and the Henry P. Kendall Foundation to support collaborative faculty research programs, sustainable agriculture apprenticeships, student internships and research projects, and cross-institutional initiatives that will also advance Hampshire College’s goal of sourcing nearly 100% of food locally.