Author Archives: Ozarks Public Health Institute

About Ozarks Public Health Institute

The Ozarks Public Health Institute (OPHI) was established by the Board of Governors in February of 2001 as a Missouri State University-wide Institute with an aim to address public health issues in Missouri. Utilization of the assets and resources of the entire University allows OPHI to offer meaningful services, while addressing a broad range of issues.

Reducing food waste at MSU’s Blair-Shannon Dining Hall and feeding the hungry

On Monday, September 22, we began a pilot program thanks to a partnership between Missouri State University’s Dining Services, Ozarks Food Harvest and national organization, The Food Recovery Network.

Every year, the Food Recovery Network (FRN) unites students at colleges and universities to fight food waste and hunger by recovering perishable food that would otherwise go to waste from their campuses and the surrounding communities and donating it to people in need. Since September 2011, FRN has donated nearly 500,000 pounds of food.

MSU Ozarks Public Health Institute Student VolunteersStudents at MSU’s Ozarks Public Health Institute have formed a local FRN chapter and have recovered 269 pounds of ready-to-eat food from Blair-Shannon Dining Hall that could have otherwise gone to waste. The food is being donated to the South Side and Northview senior centers in Springfield, Missouri.  Types of food being recovered include fresh fruit, meats and beans, rice and pasta dishes as well as milk – all of which provide nutritious supplements to existing menus.

Our pilot program ended on October 17th, which lasted approximately four weeks. Since then, OPHI, Missouri State Dining Services and our partner agencies have collaborated to share stories, successes and the continuum of the program.

To learn more about the food recovery program pilot, join us tomorrow, October 24, at the MSU Plaster Student Union Food Day event.

Food Day Celebration at Missouri State University

Ozarks Public Health Institute, along with campus and community partners, is hosting an event to celebrate healthy, affordable, and sustainable food in the Springfield community!

On Friday, October 24th, Ozarks Public Health Institute will host “Food Day” on Missouri State’s campus of the 2nd floor PSU Atrium from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM. The event will feature both on-campus student organizations and community organizations , representing different aspects of the food system. There will be local food samples, cooking demonstrations, fun activities, giveaways & more!

Overall, we are excited to partner with both students and community members for this special event and nationwide movement. Together, we would like to educate students and community members about healthy local food options and identify opportunities to be involved in the growth and availability of healthy food to all members of our community. So please join us!