In Dining Services, Real Food is our guiding principle. Menus are based on the seasonality and availability of regional products, and food offerings are varied and rotate based on nature’s bounty. We work with local farms and companies to procure produce grown using sustainable and organic practices, like the vegetables that come from our own Fairfield Farm. To preserve the quality of these premium products, fruits and vegetables are prepared fresh and served in the smallest possible batches.
We take the same approach with our protein. Hotchkiss Dining has pioneered a local whole animal program, which allows us to purchase steer, hogs, lamb, chicken and duck directly from local farmers. We work with a third-party verified humane USDA slaughterhouse to custom cut and process our meat — which, to date, has allowed us to redirect more than $100,000 into our local economy.
All of our chicken is antibiotic-free, and all the pork we use is regionally sourced and gestation-crate free. For the 2017-18 academic year, we're committed to using exclusively regional, grass-fed beef, and we're working towards a goal of 100% sustainably sourced seafood.
Our kitchen never uses chemically preserved prepared foods. Stocks are prepared in-house, salad dressings are homemade, and all foods are prepared fresh daily by our staff. MSG and other chemical additives are never allowed in the preparation of our foods.
By sourcing wholesome products and cooking them in-house, we can ensure healthy practices are used to create our dishes. Because we make everything ourselves, we can ensure that foods marked as allergy-safe are truly gluten-, dairy-, soy-, nut-, and meat-free. Healthy nutritional choices and vegetarian entrée are available at every meal. We even believe fried food can be made healthier by using only non-hydrogenated canola oil to minimize trans-fatty acids in our foods.