CSU Voices and Views

Green Eggs and Ham

By Lisa McPheron
Director of Communications
The Collins College of Hospitality Management
Cal Poly Pomona

The Collins College’s Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch has a lovely location on the Cal Poly Pomona campus.  Just uphill from grazing land for cattle and the swine unit, it is not difficult for Collins College students to understand where food comes from and grasp food-sourcing concepts.

The Collins College’s Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch has a lovely location on the Cal Poly Pomona campus. Just uphill from grazing land for cattle and the swine unit, it is not difficult for Collins College students to understand where food comes from and grasp food-sourcing concepts.

Green eggs and ham don’t quite mean what they used to.  These days if a restaurant can show its customers that it practices sustainability – it has a leg up on the competition. “Green” eggs, at least figuratively speaking, are actually a hot sell.

The Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch (RKR) at Cal Poly Pomona’s Collins College of Hospitality Management embraces sustainable practices and is eager to adopt new methods to reduce its impact on the environment.  The RKR is a classroom where undergraduates learn all aspects of a hospitality business.  Each quarter, a lunch class and a dinner class operate the restaurant, which is open to the public. In each class, 30 students rotate weekly through all the positions, under the direction of faculty.  Every student has an opportunity to fill a management role, gaining hands-on leadership experience. 

A culinary garden, energy and water efficient equipment and some locally sourced food are a few ways the restaurant embraces green standards of operation.  Additionally, an environmental audit is being conducted this summer by faculty and students at Cal Poly Pomona’s John T. Lyle Center of Regenerative Studies to identify where improvements can be made.  Food sourcing, food waste and energy and water consumption will be studied closely.

Below are a few images of the Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch.

The Collins College of Hospitality Management’s Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch (RKR) strives to practice environmental sustainability, not because it is trendy, but because it is the right thing to do from environmental and cost-control perspectives.

The Collins College of Hospitality Management’s Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch (RKR) strives to practice environmental sustainability, not because it is trendy, but because it is the right thing to do from environmental and cost-control perspectives.

In the summer of 2009, the RKR kitchen was remodeled with energy- and water-efficient equipment.  The new equipment reduces energy costs and contributes to the Presidents’ Climate Commitment, which puts Cal Poly Pomona on a track to reduce its carbon emissions and become climate neutral.

In the summer of 2009, the RKR kitchen was remodeled with energy- and water-efficient equipment. The new equipment reduces energy costs and contributes to the Presidents’ Climate Commitment, which puts Cal Poly Pomona on a track to reduce its carbon emissions and become climate neutral.

The RKR tries to minimize its impact on the environment by using biodegradable take-out containers, straws, bags, cups and cutlery. The restaurant also uses biodegradable detergent and other cleaning products.

The RKR tries to minimize its impact on the environment by using biodegradable take-out containers, straws, bags, cups and cutlery. The restaurant also uses biodegradable detergent and other cleaning products.

Chefs on faculty work directly with agriculture students to plan each crop of the one-acre culinary garden. Recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects, the award-winning garden is maintained by agriculture students and harvested by Collins College students.  Items from the garden are incorporated into the menu giving students a farm-to-table lesson in seasonal menu planning and preparation.

Chefs on faculty work directly with agriculture students to plan each crop of the one-acre culinary garden. Recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects, the award-winning garden is maintained by agriculture students and harvested by Collins College students. Items from the garden are incorporated into the menu giving students a farm-to-table lesson in seasonal menu planning and preparation.

Cal Poly Pomona’s vast campus is home to many critters, and those critters love to eat the fruits and vegetables in the culinary garden.  Two owl boxes have been erected so owls can serve as natural pest control for the garden.  Chicken wire also surrounds the garden to keep hungry pests out.

Cal Poly Pomona’s vast campus is home to many critters, and those critters love to eat the fruits and vegetables in the culinary garden. Two owl boxes have been erected so owls can serve as natural pest control for the garden. Chicken wire also surrounds the garden to keep hungry pests out.

The garden is funded through the proceeds of the award-winning Horsehill Vineyards wine, which is produced by the Collins College and the College of Agriculture. The vineyards are located on the slope southeast of the restaurant as well as AGRIScapes near the Farm Store at Kellogg Ranch.  Horsehill Vineyards wine is served at the restaurant and available at the Farm Store.

The garden is funded through the proceeds of the award-winning Horsehill Vineyards wine, which is produced by the Collins College and the College of Agriculture. The vineyards are located on the slope southeast of the restaurant as well as AGRIScapes near the Farm Store at Kellogg Ranch. Horsehill Vineyards wine is served at the restaurant and available at the Farm Store.

Chef/Lecturers Scott Rudolph and Ernie Briones try to locally source food products as much as possible. Cal Poly Pomona-grown produce is purchased occasionally from the Cal Poly Pomona Farm Store at Kellogg Ranch.

Chef/Lecturers Scott Rudolph and Ernie Briones try to locally source food products as much as possible. Cal Poly Pomona-grown produce is purchased occasionally from the Cal Poly Pomona Farm Store at Kellogg Ranch.

The garden is located mere steps away from the dining room. The garden and an old oak tree set a natural and peaceful environment for guests.

The garden is located mere steps away from the dining room. The garden and an old oak tree set a natural and peaceful environment for guests.

Students are the heart and soul of the restaurant.

Students are the heart and soul of the restaurant.

Sometimes pretty pictures are just that.  Here is a photo of a student preparing Italian parsley.

Sometimes pretty pictures are just that. Here is a photo of a student preparing Italian parsley.

Note: In addition to working for Cal Poly Pomona, McPheron is also a proud alumna of the CSU.  She earned bachelor’s degrees in Journalism and American Studies in 2001 and a master’s of Communications in 2010.  All three degrees are from CSU Fullerton.  McPheron is featured in a video as part of the CSSA Made in the CSU campaign.

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2 Comments to “Green Eggs and Ham”

  1. Susan Lendroth, Other  Says:

    Love the title of this piece!

  2. David Hastings, Other  Says:

    Thks for the great article and website. For a food lover like me, I will visit back often.

    David

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