What does your mind conjure up amid the thought of ‘green food’? Do you think of a crisp, green salad, paired with delicate cucumber and crimson tomatoes? Do you imagine a silky green smoothie, earthy but sweet and abounding with nutrients and enzymes? Or do you visualise acres of green fields sprinkled with hydroponic farms, solar panels and electric vehicles…
Here at the Russell Partnership, we’re nurturing our utilisation of the green food concept to encompass both vitality and sustainability. Traditionally, green food may be thought of as lifeless and unimaginative health food that is lacklustre and unappealing to the accustomed foodie. We’d like to challenge this belief by encouraging universities to offer delicious, healthy food that is innovative, inclusive and sustainably sourced.
Our meaning of green food is one of ecological longevity and human vitality – one that is both symbiotic with our precious globe, and biologically advantageous to the consumer.
There is a place for green food within university life – in both senses of the word. We know that a food and beverage provision abounding with nutrient-dense and low-glycemic options is beneficial to both the physical and mental wellbeing of our students. Dark, leafy greens in particular such as kale, spinach, Swiss chard and rocket are rich sources of micronutrients such as manganese, vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C and calcium – all essential for optimal wellbeing.
Similarly, the delivery of foods derived from sustainable agricultural practices are beneficial to the ecosystem and stimulate a positive message to the local area, the students and the academic community. Sustainable food practices are local, seasonal and organic where possible and plants should be at the centre of the plate, with meat, free-range eggs and sustainably caught fish on the periphery for both optimal health and sustainable practice.
So, the key message here is to think green – let’s work in harmony with our bodies and our world, one plate at a time.