About Food Recovery Network

Carleton student volunteers recover surplus food from Burton Dining Hall, transport it, and donate it to end users such as the Alternative Learning Center of Northfield and the Community Action Center.

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About Food Recovery Network: 

Carleton student volunteers recover surplus food from campus dining halls and retail stores in Northfield, ultimately transporting and redistributing it to organizations that serve to reduce food insecurity in Rice County.


Working together with Bon Appétit, the CCCE founded Carleton’s chapter of the national Food Recovery Network in January 2014, the first such branch in the state of Minnesota. We strive to both reduce food waste on campus and address food access problems in our surrounding community. 

Student volunteers recover surplus food from both LDC and Burton dining halls six nights a week, collect upwards of 1,500 lbs of food each week from Cub Foods and Target on Monday and Thursday morning, and rescue dozens of bagels from Tandem Bagels every Saturday. Recovered food is then transported to various community partners in Northfield and Faribault, including the Community Action Center Food Shelf, Greenvale Elementary School, St. Dominic’s Church, and the Key Youth Center. Through this work, Food Recovery supports numerous food access points for families that have inadequate access to nutritious meals, all the while diverting thousands of pounds of food from the landfill and forging connections between Carleton dining hall staff, students, and Rice County community members.

Sign up to volunteer with FRN!

Link takes you to a spreadsheet where you can sign up. Choose a day and location using the tabs at the bottom of the sheet.