Colleges and universities across the United States are increasingly sourcing the food for their dining halls from local farms through farm-to-college (FTC) programs. Although participation in FTC programs may increase the visibility of the school to prospective students and parents, support the local economy, and introduce new options into campus eateries, FTC programs face a number of operational barriers. Inadequate student support, institutional procurement policies, and seasonality limit the reach of FTC efforts. This article discusses these barriers in detail through the perspective of New England higher education institutions and uses Tufts University as a case study in the challenges and potential for FTC programs to become mainstream in college and university food service
A new connection for getting locally grown food to people
Kathleen A. Merrigan, PhD, is an assistant professor and director of the Agriculture, Food, and Environment Program at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University.
Melissa Bailey, MS, is a PhD candidate in the Agriculture, Food, and Environment Program at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University.
Corresponding author: Melissa Bailey, MS, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, 150 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02111 (firstname.lastname@example.org).