Community Kitchen seeks to integrate the campus and community to increase access to high quality and nutritious food through a multifaceted, innovative approach to alleviating food insecurity within Stearns county. Our meal-delivery program utilizes surplus food on campus and in the community as a catalyst for education, collaboration, and community action.
Community Kitchen envisions a mutually beneficial campus-community partnership that educates and empowers us to transform the current food system and mindset into one which comprehensively supports and nourishes our community.
Roots of CSB Community Kitchen
Certain parties within CSB, including the Office for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement and the Office of Sustainability, spent multiple years researching models of campus food recovery programs, including The Campus Kitchens Project and specifically Augsburg's Campus Kitchen. Augsburg's model encompasses a free food program, the community garden, the farmer's market, and food justice simulations, and its mentorship has been instrumental in the implementaion of CSB Community Kitchen.
CSB Community Kitchen currently partners with Bel Clare Estates, Hands Across the World, Anna Marie's Alliance, and the Dream Center to provide congregate meals three times a week. The CSB Community Kitchen strives to maintain a community-based focus through providing programs within the surrounding area. We work with these partners in order to provide access to warm and healthy meals to those facing food insecurity. Through these programs, we are able to build connections with those in our local community.
Resources - Food Waste and Hunger in the US
Over 40 percent of the food produced for consumption ends up in the landfill. In fact, the US alone wastes enough food to fill the 90,000-seat Rose Bowl stadium every day. That's an annual cost of over $100 billion. According to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) if food waste were a country, it would rank as the third top emitter of CO2 after the US and China. And while these facts reflect an obvious inefficiency in our food system, 49 million Americans do not know where their next meal is coming from. It is estimated that there are 100 million missing meals each year in the state of Minnesota.
The juxtaposition of immense food waste and persistent hunger is puzzling, but Community Kitchen's effort focuses on strategically fitting these pieces together to transform the current system into one which comprehensively supports and nourishes our community.