Sustainable Purchasing

image of strawberry, honey, and coffee

Local, Fair Trade, and Organic

Approximately 54% of all food served is purchased from vendors within 250 miles of the Morningside campus.  A New York City Greenmarket and area farms work with Columbia Dining.

  • Milk originates from Clover Farms in Reading, PA and is distributed by GAF Seelig.  Clover Farms prohibits the use of synthetic hormones and certifies that their milk is GMO-free. 

  • Tomatoes are sourced by FreshPoint Connecticut and purchased from local farms such as James Desiderio in Buffalo, NY, Chrisaforo Farms in North Haven, CT, and Beckett Farms in Glastonbury, CT.  Since California is a prime growing region, FreshPoint purchases and transports tomatoes using a dedicated rail service, Railex USA.  Both options help to ensure freshness and reduce carbon emissions.  FreshPoint partners with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, a non-profit community-based workers organization that works to improve wages and working conditions for farmworkers in the tomato supply chain.

  • Tomatoes are also grown at Old Maid’s Farm in South Glastonbury, CT, and used for salsa made by Onofrio’s of New Haven, CT.

  • Apples and fresh apple cider are purchased from local farms located in New York State.

  • Strawberries, grown at Hindinger Farm in Hamden, CT, are used for jam, also made by Onofrio’s of New Haven, CT. 

  • Coffee is fair trade, organic, shade grown, bird friendly and roasted in Brooklyn by the Brooklyn Roasting Company.

  • Bakery goods and grab-and-go sandwiches are purchased from local vendors in New York City’s five boroughs.

  • Honey is purchased from Ballard’s Honey in Roxbury, NY, a Columbia Greenmarket vendor.

  • Seafood purchases are determined by the Northeast guidelines of Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch. Dining buys from the “Best Choices” category, meaning the fish are plentiful and caught or farmed according to sustainability standards.

  • All Coca-Cola products are manufactured in the Bronx.

  • Suppliers provide seasonal and locally grown vegetables to the dining halls and retail outlets. Vegetables include green leaf, romaine and Boston lettuce; cucumbers; red radishes; green, red and white cabbage; leeks; turnips; escarole; red, green, Serrano, jalapeno and Italian peppers; red beets; carrots; portabella, shiitake, enoki, crimini and button mushrooms; spaghetti, butternut, yellow and zucchini squashes; pumpkin; eggplant; collard greens; spinach; red and white potatoes; Swiss chard; green beans; corn; parsnips; sweet onions; and green peas.

Additionally, all of our chicken and pork is hormone and antibiotic free and our tofu is GMO-free.