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    The Culinary Institute of America
  Feb 22, 2018
2017-2018 Academic Catalog
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Chef-Community Relations (BPSE-407)

3.0 credits
How can chefs, consumers, and farmers see themselves as co-producers of the food being served on American menus today? Demand for farm-fresh ingredients is not the only opportunity chefs and farmers have to collaborate. Chefs and restaurateurs are the ones who hold together the often-distant worlds of “farmer” and “consumer.” The choices made at every step of the supply chain of quality ingredients determine whether one sees himself or herself as a chef, a farmer, a consumer, an educator, or part of a healthy community that represents all. This course offers students the opportunity to develop a collective wisdom within the farm-to-table movement. It will empower them to make wise choices about their role as a chef or restaurateur in today’s world that will reduce the sense of “other-ness” created when there is no collaboration with the source of their food or the community to which they belong. It will help guide students to see farming as a noble and accessible pursuit in which the farmers’ stories can be heard, seen, and tasted with every bite. Students will coordinate with local organizations, producers, and each other to create a network of education and collaboration. They will do this by creating, maintaining, and running a stand at the St. Helena Farmers’ Market; preparing farm-driven community educational dinners at the CIA; and fostering continued learning for the next generation at a non-profit dedicated to local agricultural and environmental education. By engaging in conversations with local producers, organizations, consumers, and each other, students will be challenged to foster their beliefs and values about what the chef-farmer-community collaboration means to them. They will be required to share their knowledge with their classmates through presentations, with farm dinner guests, and with the community at large.

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