Case Study by Riley Neugebauer
Campuses across the country have seen an increasing interest in food systems and farming from students and faculty, which has led to the creation of new majors and minors related to food and agriculture, as well as an increase in on-campus food production. There are a variety of outlets for the food that is produced on campus, including selling or giving it to campus dining operations, creating campus-based CSA programs for students and employees of the college, or using the opportunity to address food access and hunger in the community or communities surrounding the campus.
Unity College is one the campuses that has chosen to work with their community on food access as a part of their campus food production efforts. They formed a partnership in 2009 with an organization called Veggies For All in rural Maine, which works to relieve hunger by growing vegetables for those in need, while collaborating with partners to distribute and increase access to quality and nutritious food. This partnership provides thousands of pounds of food to hundreds of clients of the local food bank, the Volunteer Regional Food Pantry, and provides educational opportunities for students. In 2014 VFA became a project of Maine Farmland Trust, which hopes to expand the model and support food bank farming statewide.
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