Established in 2012, this student project serves as the central hub of hands-on activity related to the production of sustainable food. Food is grown by students, harvested by students, prepared for students and consumed by students as well as faculty and staff at dining halls and cafes.
University of Michigan Sustainable Food Program, Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum
Achieved chemical reduction goal
U-M met its goal largely by moving toward the use of organic fertilizer rather than synthetic fertilizers. Organic fertilizer comprises an estimated 75 percent of the fertilizer used by Grounds Services, and 20 percent of the fertilizer used by Radrick Farms and the U-M Golf Courses. Grounds Services also is piloting a low impact broadleaf weed control on approximately 25 percent of campus, including the Diag. In addition, there are campus-wide efforts to expand naturalized areas, such as prairie and woodlots, which require fewer land management chemicals and are better suited to handle stormwater.
Bringing more fresh food to campus
Michigan Dining — in collaboration with Central Student Government, Office of Campus Sustainability and MHealthy — hosts several M Farmers Market events in September and October. Additionally, there are weekly M Farmers Market produce stands in selected locations across campus from May through the summer.
Goal data reflects temporary pandemic-related impacts and may not accurately convey the overall trajectory of progress.
For more information about U-M’s sustainability goals, visit the Office of Campus Sustainability.