The improvement, awareness, and education of sustainable food systems has been integrated in to UC Santa Cruz since early years of campus development. Just two short years after the school was founded, Alan Chadwick was hired to create a Student Garden Project. This project was so successful it lead to the development the Farm in 1971. Two decades later, in 1993, the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) was formed. CASFS is now a leading facility in research and education of environmental and social aspects of sustainable agriculture.
The Food Systems Working Group (FSWG), established in 2003, works to bring responsibly grown food to the dining halls, which was made much easier with the transition in 2004 to self-operated dining services. In Spring 2010 students approved Measure 43, the Sustainable Food, Health and Wellness Initiative, which generates over $100,000 from student fees to support a healthy campus food system. The remarkable drive and collaboration from students, staff, and faculty has brought organic, fair trade, and sustainable foods to campus and created an opportunity to educate the broader community and set an example for other schools.
Vision: Provide resources and educational tools that explain where food on campus comes from and where it goes.
Vision: Incorporate food system education into the residential college classes and other university courses.
Vision: Create a campus-wide "Food Run" event.
Program in Community Agroecology (PICA) hosts market carts where students can get free fruits and vegetables from campus gardens. This increases awareness of the campus gardens and promotes healthy eating habits.
Food Systems Learning Journeys through the UCSC Recreation Department allow students to explore the local food systems through visits to local farms, cooking workshops, and more.
UCSC Dining hosts an Annual Local and Organic Food Tasting Fair. This free event allows the campus community to learn more about dining options on campus and in the community, while tasting local, organic food.
Campus Sustainability Plan
By 2016, increase and sustain 36% real food purchases across UCSC Dining Services, and bring all contracted food locations to 20% real food.
By fall 2015, establish an argoecology and food justice orientation program for new and transfer students.
By fall 2015, have at least two contract service vendors green business certified.