A sustainable caffeine fix: Organic coffee, tea, now offered at 7th Street Café

Megan Hays, Staff Writer

The University’s Dining Services has been working to enhance the quality and overall student experience at dining locations throughout campus over the past year. Recent improvements include the smoothie bar in the Bison, the extensive salad bar options and sustainable burgers sold at the Commons, and the toast bar recently introduced in the Bison. However, one of the lesser-known and most impactful changes was the switch from Starbucks products to organically harvested coffee in 7th Street Café.

Director of Retail Operations Jay Breeding emphasized these accomplishments along with other changes to campus dining options that were a result of this initiative.

“This semester, the biggest projects were the opening of the Bison for breakfast at 7:30 on Mondays through Fridays, and the launch of a new beverage program at 7th Street,” Breeding said, referring to the introduction of cold brew coffee and hot breakfast takeout options.

After collecting student feedback on these programs, the selection of a new coffee vendor was suggested. The University had previously been supplied with coffee courtesy of the Bucknell Brigade in Nicaragua program, but Breeding and his staff wanted to find another partner to provide high quality coffee.

Once they had concluded their research and sample testing, Breeding’s team decided to partner with Stockton Graham & Co., a USDA-certified organic coffee roaster from Raleigh, N.C. This semester marked the first appearance of the new coffee at the 7th Street Café.

“Stockton Graham roasts our beans to order and we have the beans within two to three days of roasting so that when we grind a batch to brew, our guests get the freshest cup of coffee imaginable,” Breeding said.

In addition to the new coffee vendor, the refresh program introduced multiple products from Two Leaves and a Bud, a craft tea company that provides organic and whole leaf teas.

“I’m more of a tea drinker personally, and the range of teas we have now is awesome,” Caitlin Friel ’19 said.

Breeding expressed the team’s interest in sustainability, with the addition of china and glassware available for those enjoying a meal in 7th Street. These additions were part of an ongoing effort to be more environmentally friendly and enhance the “coffee house experience.”

The switch to organic is currently just in 7th Street, as this was an upgrade in the overall “sit-down experience,” Dannah Strauss ’17, a marketing intern for Dining Services, said. “[Now] they can do more with the types of drinks they make and [they can] have flavored coffees.”

“It tastes pretty similar to the old coffee that used to be served, so if it is organic without a compromise to taste, all the better,” Ali Malone ’19 said.

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