November 22, 2022 Kitchen Cabinet Minutes Posted on December 6th, 2022 by

November 22, 2022

Steve Kjellgren, Tim Born, Jeri Miller, Jen Donkin, Lisa Heldke, Stephanie Marsh, Karen Yess, Anna
Deike, Chuck Niederriter, Danielle Burger, Kari Wallin, Lucas Lennartson, Soren Sackreiter
From the Director: Last meeting was an energizing start to the school year and looking forward
to building on that momentum.
The opportunity for us is 2/3 of students who have the opportunity to work on campus are not
working. There are certain jobs students prefer to do. We are trying to change that and get
back to being a community of serving each other. Steve is working with student employment
and career center and will change things up for next school year. If that doesn’t work, will need
to look at changes that need to be made in the structure of employment on campus
Steve also reached out to faculty to promote discussion on this situation as student
employment is a wonderful way to teach life skills and make new connections with full time
staff and other students. In Dining Service there are also advancement opportunites for
student workers.
Supply chain issues have improved and improved staffing for full time employees, those issues
aren’t as difficult as the student workforce.
Student perspective – assigning work study next year may help get more workers in Dining
Service, but there will be push back.
There are a subset of colleges that are “work” colleges. Every student goes there free, but they
all work on campus and a concept to look at.

Reports from other corners of the college:
Johnson Center/Sustainability: Sustainability interns are looking into how to test water on
campus – chemical testing in different buildings and drinking fountains to help understand why
more students are buying bottled water vs using from the tap. Eventually will come back to the
taste testing and will need Kitchen Cabinet assistance. Bottled water is the number one bottled
item sold in the cafeteria and it is expensive.
Student input: The cafeteria water is the best (there is extra filtration for this water due to Coke
requirements for the Freestyle Machines). Some students in pitman won’t drink water from
the sinks in their dorm and Sohre sink water is worse.
Kari: Focusing a push on event sustainability – top-down energy and waste reductions and
trying to reach as many groups as possible. Developing green events check list of things that
would be required to help formalize this. Looking to this group for ideas and will bring in all the
event managers on campus for feedback.
Composting and recycling in buildings: We are short on compost bins so will work on increasing
the number of bins on campus. Sorting has been pretty good, but will still find some forks, etc.

The composting facility will only take compost with 5% contamination and we will get a warning
when we are close, but this hasn’t happened much.
In the dorms students aren’t consistently using the composting bins because they are afraid of
them smelling. There are also more students using the to go containers vs Gustie Ware, which
clutter up the bins and there is a lot of garbage in the Gustie ware bins, partly because there
often isn’t a garbage can nearby.
We need to formalize this so everywhere we have bins we have all options for recycling, trash,
Gustie ware and compost. The question was also posed as to how much of our recycling is able
to be recycled since food containers aren’t cleaned and cardboard doesn’t have the value it
used to. Definitely an area we can improve on.
Looking forward to connecting the Try It with sustainability projects. They have brainstormed a
few options such as dairy and meat alternatives for lower energy and adding statistics.
Bookmark: Have google calendars for students and add as an event. Will have a non-meat
alternative for their holiday party. They continue to collect plastic bags for recycling. Large
bags of plastic should not be put in the gray cart in the back hall as it is already sorted. There
can’t be any food residue. Fair trade items are also promoted in the Bookmark.
Print Services: They do all of the recycling for the print shop. Paper is comingled in our
Executive Chef: Working on the menu for spring. Meeting with the PA’s for input on the menu.
Last year we had good input from last years menu – Asian bar with items all separate was one
idea. There are also new items for lunch vs dinner and more batch firing for items to be more
fresh. Cost is one item discussed at this meeting – Gustavus price mark up is actually much less
than most restaurants/college food service.
Trying to go to more scratch cooking vs convenience items. More training is needed for the
employees to accomplish this. Pre-cooked, cut up chicken vs staff cooking and cutting up the
chicken. The cost is less to students. The amount of scratch cooking has increased from 10-
We aren’t a profit centered food-service which helps contain the cost. Majority of restaurants:
food costs are low 30% of the final bill. For us, it’s more like 40% of the cost.
How do we promote this? Social media, marketing articles. Tim has tried contacting the
newspaper to promote the Dining service with stories – Soren will pursue this as he works with
the newspaper.
Environmental Action Coalition (EAC): Students often feel like the same foods are offered and
don’t know when the specials are. Some frustration that all foods aren’t analyzed. Encouraged
to contact Jen Donkin with items they need more info on. The menu spreadsheet can also be
added to the website. Chef Tim – part of the lack of variety is due to lack of staffing. Email for any feedback.

Thoughts on first Try It! – Suggestion to offer once a month – pick a day with less catering,
work with Margi. Also streamline the focus on topic/information
Ideas: – Sustainability – decreased energy use with dairy and meat alternatives
– Scratch cooking, whole foods – cost savings

From a brainstorm activity one year ago:
Tasting events: (Try It! Tuesday)
Fair trade
Plastic film recycling
Composting: Kari is compost, waste and sustainability manager
Chef: test kitchen idea, elite meal (one station), takeover all the stations with a theme,
international meals
Social media presence
How can we add back to students? (Kevin)
Physics and Johnson Center: pushing on energy side (reduce 25%)
Coke grant ($)
Programming at arboretum
Big Hill
Academic support, CIE, Int’l and cultural ed
Capitalize on students’ cultural experiences
Opportunities to re-engage people in meals and conversations
Allergen free station: what about rotisserie. Top eight (soon nine) would definitely not be there.
He set it up at MSU
How do we keep students
Knowing what you’re eating—that’s the way to know how you’re going to be when you’re old.
We’re Gusties: this is about YOU, not about making money for someone else
Equity and inclusion
Cultural diversity
Health education

Supply chain
Story for admission.

Next Meeting: December 6, 2022


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