Agroecology Education Farm and NC State Dining – A Perfect Pairing

Written by Dee Shore

In the decade since NC State University’s Agroecology Education Farm was created, it has grown much more than produce. It’s also grown a healthy partnership with NC State Dining that helps students connect the food on their plates to the importance of agriculture.

Through the partnership, NC State Dining gets fruits and vegetables from the farm to serve with some of the 30,000 meals it prepares each day. This year, that included 8,000 pounds of tomatoes, greens, watermelon, peppers and more that were grown on less than 1.5 acres, according to farm manager Alison Reeves.

In return, NC State Dining has invested substantially in the farm, paying part of Reeves’ salary, funding a hoop house that extends production in the months when the students are on campus, and sponsoring a postharvest teaching pavilion where produce is washed and refrigerated before it goes to NC State’s dining halls.

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