Real Food Week at UW Madison

Next Monday marks the start of the first ever Real Food Week at UW-Madison!

On October 21-25, schools and communities from across the country will come together to advocate for a more just and sustainable food system on their campuses.

The goal is to increase awareness about the benefits of real food, which is defined as fulfilling at least one of the following four categories:

Local and Community-Based: Sourcing these foods supports the local economy by keeping money in the community and builds on community relations.

Fair: Sourcing these foods ensures individuals involved in food production, distribution, preparation – and other parts of the food system – work in safe and fair conditions; receiving living wage; are ensured the right to organize and the right to a grievance process; and have equal opportunity for employment.

Ecologically Sound: Sourcing these foods supports farms, businesses, and other operations involved with food production practice environmental stewardship that conserves biodiversity and preserves natural resources and minimizes toxic substances and indirect and direct petroleum inputs.

Humane: Sourcing these foods ensures animals can express natural behavior in a low-stress environment and are raised with no hormones or unnecessary medication.

Sponsored by Slow Food UW, F.H. King, The Office of Sustainability, Wisconsin Union Directorate, the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology, University Health Services and other community partners, Real Food Week will feature a series of events exploring the potential community, environmental and economic benefits of increased sourcing of real food.

Check out the schedule of events below:


October 21st

  • Slow Food UW Family Dinner Night and Panel Discussion (Open to the Community; cost $5)

Details: The Crossing (1127 Universtiy Ave) at 6:30 pm, menu curated by guest chef Joey Dunscombe of the Weary Traveler

o   Panelists include:

Jack Kloppenburg, Professor of Community and Environmental Sociology and Director of UW-Madison’s Greenhouse Learning Community

Sarah Lloyd, Manager of the Wisconsin Food Hub

Jeffery Orr, Executive Chef of Gordon Commons

Axel Adams, Garden Director of F.H. King Student Farm

John and Dorothy Priske, Owners and Operators of Fountain Prairie Farms

 October 22nd

  • 7PM Screening of Ingredients at Union South Marquee

o   Ingredients is a documentary that explores local food movement, specifically the farmers and chefs who are creating a sustainable food system and revitalizing the connection between people, land, and delicious, healthy food.

  • Open Lecture by Professor Alfonso Morales (Department of Urban and Regional Planning) on Distribution & Marketplaces in the Food System

o   Details: 4028 Vilas Hall at 11 am

October 23rd

  • SlowFood-UW Lunch Café (Open to the Community; cost ~$8)

o   Details:  The Crossing (1127 University Ave) from 11:30am-2 pm, menu curated by guest chef Melly Mel and UHS, the theme is healthy soul food

  • Open Lecture by Professor Michael Bell (Department of Community and Environmental Sociology) on Foods and Goods – Valuing What We Eat

o   Details: 4028 Vilas Hall at 3 pm

October 24th

  • Food Day petitioning (Campus only event)

o   Details:  A network of student organizations will be collecting petition signatures to demonstrate student and campus community support for Real Food in the UW dining halls.  Signatures will be collected from 12pm-7pm in Gordon Commons, Greater Lakes Market, and Bascom Hill.

  • Open Lecture by Professor Jane Collins (Department of Community and Environmental Sociology) on Labor Justice in the Food System

o   Details: Science Hall 360 at 5:30 pm

October 25th

  • F.H. King Harvest Festival (Campus only event)

o   Details:  F.H. King Student Farm at Eagle Height’s Community Garden from 5-8pm.  F.H. King’s annual Harvest Fest celebrates the end of the growing season and provides students with hands on gardening experience.  This year, Underground Food Collective will cater the event with music by Boo Bradley.

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