Kitchen Cabinet Meeting Minutes December 2015 Posted on January 5th, 2016 by

Kitchen Cabinet
December 14, 2015

Margo Druschel, Erin Kuiper, Brady Kelley, Kailey Holmes, Cameron Reischauer, George Elliott , Paul Matzke, Patrick Neri, Kaitlyn Bicek(SAVE), Mark Hanson , Lisa Heldke,
Audi Dickey, Amos Johnson, Abby Nistler

Fair Trade
Abby and Margo discussed the success of Gustavus becoming a Fair Trade College. It has not been publicly announced and there will be an upcoming press release. Gustavus will be the first college in Minnesota to be Fair Trade Certified. So the questions become, “What is next”? It is important to see that we are not done and being Fair Trade Certified opens the doors to do more things. In Dining we have already thought about how we procure items at Gustavus and the next step is to ask other members of the campus how they procure items. Margo discussed ethical procurement and gave us the example of products being purchased at Office Max; we are able to look at that list of items and ask questions such as is there a cost effective Fair Trade product, is there a more sustainable product available, etc. How can we expand more in to classes as well and have students and faculty think about how we can incorporate Fair Trade discussions in the classroom.
The Greens
They have wrapped a few projects in the last few weeks. The recycling posters are up. The composting grant was not accepted but the Senior Seminar class is still working on composting. The Physical Plant will provide them with bigger cans and Dining Services are saving buckets with lids so the student can use those for compost in their rooms. There will be a test run over J-term and depending on how it is utilized there may be room to expand more composting individually across campus. The biggest interest truly is in the apartments (College View, Chapel View, and Arbor View).
The Greens are registered for recylemania and it starts in April. There are no plans to participate in energy wars at this time.
Under discussion was a film for first year orientation. There is also an opportunity to partner with Fair Trade. It would be nice to have a comprehensive effort that also shows Fair Trade symbols. The Greens would be open to partnering.
The water bottle sculpture is also planned; they are working out the logistics as to how to capture the water bottles. It was noted about 472 water bottles a week are used (this was based on the 12 month calendar, it was noted they may recalculate and base it on the school calendar). It will be a focus piece to have the campus community be more aware of water bottle usage.
Follow up discussion regarding Larry Biederman and Warren Wunderlich
The Kitchen Cabinet was grateful for last month’s enlightening discussion and it was a great educational opportunity. Overall interesting and informative.
Water Taste Test
Paul discussed the Water Taste Test (see attached handout on website). A heartfelt thanks goes out to Marian Frazier for taking all the data collected and putting it in the simplest way we can understand it. Paul let us know what the different waters were: A- Bottled Dasani B-filtered tap water (next to Courtyard Café) C- tap water (from Kitchen). It was noted with the tap water that it will taste different in the halls due to the age of the pipes.
The question was posed: “Where do we go from here?” It was recommended we post something in the MarketPlace, but not the long drawn out data. It was suggested that perhaps The Weekly may be interested. The results indicate that perhaps we don’t need bottled water. This will be part of the tabling when they do the water bottle sculpture. The Greens are also hoping to give away reusable water bottles when they table and make the sculpture. It was also noted tabling at a sporting event might get the word out as well as the digital screen in The MarketPlace.
Coke Grant Disbursement
Mark discussed the recent process of the Coke Grants. The process as a whole is very intriguing. Mark noted that with any Committee members don’t always agree and mistakes can be made. Overall it was a challenging process and all the submissions had some merit but some submissions may be better served elsewhere. A few thoughts raised were how do we prioritize the items, do we have a theme we focus on for that submission year and is there a better model out there to use as to how decide who gets the grant money. It is a great problem to have, that we do have these pool of money that will benefit the campus community. And it is also a learning process as to how students submit the grants, what a great skill to be able to obtain while you are a student on campus. The idea was brought up about students being able to verbally defend their grant but is that really helpful as with most grants it is a paper submission and we want this to be an educational experience for the student. If it is poorly written than it is an opportunity to educate and there was feedback given to those that did not get approved.
If you would like to be on the Coke grant team please let Steve know. He will post a list of all the winners soon as well as information for the gathering in the spring.
Tabling in the Dining Hall Spring Semester
This Wednesday the topic is eating for finals. There will be trail mix to make available.
Lisa asked for topics for the spring – SAVE will table in April. Another idea was having local farms present that we source from.
Steve posed the question about portion sizes on the agenda for today. How do we do portion sizes and is there more of a need or request for half portions. The question Kitchen Cabinet posed was how that can be fair when it can be subjective. If it is a defined item such as ½ sandwich and soup or ½ sandwich and small salad then it would be easier to view and define. Overall members were intrigued and it sounds as if more discussion in the future would be helpful to have.
Sleep Hygiene
Per the agenda and from Meghan Krause: “There was a small group of administrators who recently met to explore environmental opportunities to promote better sleep hygiene. The discussion focused on the findings of an environmental scan the Wellbeing Initiative completed as part of a larger study w/ other colleges). One opportunity to explore is related to the sale of caffeinated beverages after a certain time of day in the Courtyard Café and the MarketPlace. Collectively, we thought this might be a good topic of conversation for the Kitchen Cabinet”. The sum total of the conversation of the Cabinet is that it is probably not a good idea as there are many factors involved in sleep hygiene. It seems to be a broader issue and not selling caffeine after a certain time is probably not going to make someone not seek it elsewhere off campus. And students want to be able to make their own health choice.


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