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Extension > Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships > Northeast > Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems > Sustainable Ag Project at UMD: Water/Electrical Infrastructure for Student Social Enterprise Garden

Sustainable Ag Project at UMD: Water/Electrical Infrastructure for Student Social Enterprise Garden

Project files

Purpose

To educate students, the broader UMD community, and the western Lake Superior region
about healthy food and sustainable farming and gardening.

Partners

University of Minnesota partners:

  • Northeast Minnesota Sustainable Development Partnership
  • Office of Sustainability, UMD
  • Office of Civic Engagement, UMD
  • Students for Sustainable Agriculture, UMD
  • University for Seniors, UMD
  • Randel Hanson, Geography, UMD
  • David Syring, Anthropology, UMD
  • Pat Farrell, Geography, UMD
  • Stacey Stark, GIS Lab, UMD
  • Cindy Hale, NRRI, UMD
  • Mike Mullen, German Studies
  • Deb Shubat, Biology
  • Brian Bluhm, Environmental Education

List community partners

  • Michael Latsch, Seeds of Success
  • David Abazs, Round River Farm
  • Cindy Hale
  • John Fischer Merritt
  • Doug Hoffbauer

Activities

In carrying out capacity building activities, we achieved our educational objectives for
2011 which included:
  1. launch a one acre student social enterprise vegetable garden at the UMD Farm for applied education;
  2. work with UMD Dining Services to begin the evolution of the institution toward local foods use and broader procurement from area producers
  3. proceed in our second year of renovating our five acre heritage apple orchard;
  4. build a collaborative platform that allows participation in the garden by volunteer staff,students, faculty and University for Senior members.
  5. network with other institutions of higher learning that are developing sustainableagriculture programs, working toward credentialing requirements in this field for UMD.
  6. collaborate on creating an institutional food hub that can aggregate locally harvested produce in a manner that is readily usable for UMD and other institutions. This project is underway, lead by Jamie Harvie and supported by Randel Hanson and others: we have assembled the four major institutions in Duluth (UMD, CSS, St. Luke’s and Essentia) and several area producers of vegetables and beef to carry out a pilot project for 2012 on supplying produce and meat. The efforts of SAP in working with UMD Dining Services was key in relationship building, piloting local foods with their kitchen staff, and allowing them to experience the overwhelming positive feedback of the UMD community in using locally harvested produce.

Outcomes

We marketed ca. 6670 pounds of produce in 2011, of which 4000 went to the UMD
Dining Services. The rest went to the Duluth Grill, Mount Royale Fine Foods, and the
SFA Harvestfest Farmers Market. We helped UMD Dining Services think through and
experiment with local foods use. And we are in the next stage of expanding their use of
local foods by working with the Institutional Food Hub Pilot Project. We will work with
UMD Dining Services again in 2012 to supply them produce and to provide experiential
education to UMD students in small scale sustainable agriculture.

Funding

$6,000

Leveraged resources

$20,000
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