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Shandon Elementary in San Luis Obispo County to be the first public school in the U.S. to make its own flour using a stone mill on site.

5 things: Grant brings grain mill to California elementary school

This and Tulane feeding 1,500 hurricane recovery workers in its campus dining hall are some of the stories you may have missed recently.

In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.

Here’s your list for today:

  1. Grant brings grain mill to California elementary school

A $144,000 California Department of Food and Agriculture grant will enable Shandon Elementary in San Luis Obispo County to be the first public school in the U.S. to make its own flour using a stone mill on site. The grant, which is funded through March 2023, will cover the cost of the mill and two pasta extruders as well as the training for cafeteria staff to use both.

Read more: The Next Chapter for Farm to School: Milling Whole Grains in the Cafeteria

  1. Tulane opens dining hall to hurricane recovery workers

An empty Tulane University opened its doors to provide hot meals and a place to eat them to some 1,500 linemen and contractors from all over the country working around the clock to help New Orleans recover from the ravages of Hurricane Ida by providing hot meals and a place to eat them in its Dining Room at the Commons. "We thought, 'heck, let's make sure they're able to get meals too,'" Patrick Norton, Tulane Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, said. "The city was without power, and food was in short supply. The last thing we wanted was the people engaging in the recovery to be hungry."

Read more: Tulane Opens Dining Hall to Feed Linemen From All Over the Country After Hurricane Ida

  1. Collaborative connects rural hospitals with local farmers

Launched last May to help Georgia fruit and vegetable farmers get their highly perishable crops to market in the midst of the COVID epidemic that has disrupted the supply chain, the Georgia Rural Hospital Food Collaborative is now providing not only fresh fruits and vegetables but also pork, beef and even medical scrubs to rural hospitals and nursing homes in the state. “Not only is it good for hospitals. It’s good for nursing homes [and] good economic development,” said Jimmy Lewis, CEO of HomeTown Health Care, which represents rural hospitals in Georgia and which has partnered with FM Top 50 contract firm Healthcare Services Group to cut out the middleman and supply fruits and vegetables directly to 16 hospitals and nursing homes participating in the program.

Read more: Georgia farmers finding new market in rural hospitals

  1. Louisville AD apologizes to fans for concessions shortfalls

It's not just campus dining programs that are feeling the effects of the current labor and product shortage—so are concessions operations at stadiums as the college football season begins. At the University of Louisville, athletic director Vince Tyra is apologizing fans who attended the recent home opener at Cardinal Stadium for excessive concessions wait times and ticket scanning.

“We share your frustration and are working with immediacy to address these issues within our department and with our operational partners, Centerplate and CSC [event management firm Contemporary Services Corp.],” he said. “We are actively working through operational solutions today regarding everything from technical failure to labor voids.”

Read more: Louisville athletic director apologizing after fans experience issues at Cardinal Stadium

  1. Chinese school principal eats students’ leftovers as food waste lesson

In a unique approach to warning students about food waste, a school principal in China’s Hunan province has been eating students’ leftovers from the school cafeteria. In a video that went viral, Wang Yongxin is seen standing near the school’s cafeteria trash can holding his own plate and chopsticks, stopping students from throwing away their leftovers and taking the unfinished food to eat it. “Many children tried to finish their portions when they saw me eating leftover rice and some children tell the kitchen staff to give the right amount of food," he said. "This helps reduce waste.”

Read more: Chinese school principal eats leftovers from cafeteria to warn students against food waste

Bonus: Staffing shortages plague university dining programs as fall terms begin

Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]

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