Menus of Change Conference

Comes to Mission Bay

Menus of Change Conference Comes to Mission Bay

On October 2nd, the Department of Food and Nutrition Services hosted a pre-conference event for the annual all-member meeting of the Menus of Change University Research Collaborative (MCURC). MCURC is a collaboration of forward-thinking scholars, foodservice leaders, executive chefs, and administrators from colleges and universities who are dedicated to accelerating efforts to promote healthier, more sustainable, and delicious foods through evidence-based research, education, and innovation. UCSF is a proud MCURC member, and our culinary team generously offered to host this additional gathering as part of the conference schedule.

The attendees represented MCURC members from all corners of the country – and indeed, the world! We even had an attendee from Bristol, England. Among the participants were food professionals from esteemed institutions such as the University of Michigan, Rutgers, Vanderbilt, Princeton, the Culinary Institute of America, and, of course, Stanford University (the conference host), among other higher education and affiliated organizations.

Attendees eagerly signed up for events like this because they were keen to see how other facilities operate. It provided them with valuable insights and ideas for their own operations while offering a fantastic opportunity to network and expand their professional resources. During the event, UCSF NFS showcased a range of plant-forward menu items from our cafes, highlighting our creative use of more sustainable and nutritious ingredients, including whole grains such as farro, quinoa, and bulgur, as well as an array of vegetables with global flavor profiles: Indian chaat, Moroccan bulgur, South American arepas, and more. We aimed to demonstrate that plant-based whole foods can be both incredibly satisfying and diverse.

Following the tasting, UCSF staff led attendees on a comprehensive tour of our operations, including visits to the hospital floors, kitchen facilities, storage areas, and even our waste management processes. After the tour, Dan provided the group with further insights into UCSF's operations and fielded questions. Subsequently, everyone convened at SPARK Social for dinner and mingling. Buses were arranged to transport participants to the main conference location at Stanford University.

It was indeed a proud day for us, as we had the opportunity to showcase the culinary talent and extraordinary teamwork that defines Mission Bay and our Catering Department.