Local Foods

Farm to Fork – Since 2001

This food service program started in 2001 with purchases of approximately 5% of the total food budget. In 2006, 30% of the total food purchasing expenditures supported local farmers and artisans. We strive to increase our annual local purchases by 5% of the total food budget.
The Farm to Fork program empowers the chef to customize seasonal menus to satisfy the tastes of the campus. The first choice is to purchase seasonal and regional ingredients from within a 150-mile radius of the campus. These gems of the earth are often prepared and served within 48 hours of harvest. The result is healthier communities and customers. The program supports family farms and small local businesses in order to expand the capacity of Ohio farmers and vendors to supply local markets.

George Jones Memorial Farm-Since 2001

Since 2001, students at Oberlin College have been enjoying fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables from George Jones Memorial Farm, a 70 acre sustainable farm located about one mile off campus The Jones Farm is owned by Oberlin College, but operated privately by a group of college alumni dedicated to increasing sustainable commerce in the Northwestern area of Ohio..

To that end a partnership was formed with the New Agrarian Center (NAC) of Oberlin and the George Jones Memorial Farm, a program affiliated with the NAC. The Jones Farm is a working organic farm that serves a variety of educational purposes, including an education outreach program for students in Kindergarten through 5th grades, Oberlin College students and ongoing programs for rural and urban farmers in Northeast Ohio.

A heated greenhouse on the farm operates by burning the 315 liquid pounds waste fryer oil collected by students from the cafés of Oberlin College using reusable containers. The greenhouse and the waste oil operated furnace were both purchased with Bon Appétit support. City Fresh, a program affiliated with the NAC, operates a Bon Appétit funded waste oil operated, refrigerated box truck that collects from area farmers and delivers their produce to the cafés of Oberlin College and Case Western Reserve University. Oberlin College strives to model the wisdom of investment in community economic development in the very communities that they serve. The George Jones Memorial Farm is one of many local farms supported as part of the Farm to Fork program.