This case study highlights the opportunities and economic, environmental, and social value generated by one of the nation’s largest college dining operations, the University of Michigan’s MDining. The case describes the MDining leadership team and their holistic approach to implementing local and sustainable food sourcing initiatives. The team’s challenges in implementing an aspirational local sourcing program and gaps in the ecosystem encourage students to discuss potential solutions.
The case covers the important role a university can play in improving food sustainability on campus, especially through student clubs, projects, and employment and research opportunities. More broadly, the case highlights challenges that large institutions can face in implementing local sourcing and what role institutions can play in ensuring sustainable food services procurement.