At Champlain College, our dining services partner, Sodexo, is committed to purchasing local and other sustainable foods. In order to get accurate data on how much sustainable food we are purchasing, Sodexo and Sustain Champlain have teamed up to calculate these expenditures, which is one of the goals outlined in our Sustainability Action Plan. We track the purchases that fall within the following definitions*, in accordance with the Real Food Calculator:
Product is grown and/or harvested within a 250-mile radius of Champlain College, as seen in the green area on the map to the right. In the case of multi-ingredient food products, the majority of the ingredients must be grown or harvested within this range. Water cannot be considered an ingredient.
Product has a third-party certification (NOFA, USDA, etc.)
Product is grown organically but does not have a third-party certification. Must be verified by documentation on vendor's website or other similar source. Organic is defined as having limited modern synthetic inputs such as synthetic pesticides and chemical fertilizers, nor are processed using irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives. Food producers practice environmental stewardship that conserves biodiversity and preserves natural resources, including energy, wildlife, water, air, and soil. Production practices should minimize toxic substances as well as direct and indirect petroleum inputs.
Product has a third-party certification (Fair Trade USA, Fair Trade International, Fair Trade Federation, etc.) OR must be verified by documentation on vendor's website or other similar source. Individuals involved in food production, distribution, preparation — and other parts of the food system — work in safe and fair conditions; receive a living wage; are ensured the right to organize and the right to a grievance process; and have equal opportunity for employment. Fair food builds community capacity and ensures and promotes socially just practices in the food system.
Animals can express natural behavior in a low-stress environment and are raised with no hormones or unnecessary medication. Must be verified by documentation on vendor's website or other similar source.
Products sold by a business that is physically OR fiscally based in Vermont. Must be verified by documentation on vendor's website or other similar source. These purchases are tracked as part of Sodexo's Vermont First initiative.
*Some definitions were modified from those offered by the Real Food Challenge