ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Appleton cafeteria services employees had “a blast” planting a garden and look forward to tending to it through the growing season.
“I love our guests seeing our garden and even catching a glimpse of us bringing in the harvest to prepare for them,” said Danielle Pellegrini, catering associate at the hospital.
“The garden is a great opportunity for us to educate guests and staff about the food they eat and the importance of eating local,” Pellegrini added. “Local produce reduces our environmental impact by cutting out food ‘miles’ and the resources used in food processing and food packaging. The produce from the garden will be picked as needed and used immediately, resulting in better flavors and higher nutrition. When food needs to ship across the country, it is picked early and forced ripened during transport or storage, causing it to lose nutritional value.
ThedaCare cafeteria employees will use the basil, parsley, chives, thyme and other herbs to garnish café dishes and “bring out the taste of summer that we appreciate so much after a long Wisconsin winter,” she said.
They also planted eggplant, peas, cucumbers, jalapeno peppers, yellow squash and tomatoes. Look for these locally grown items in the café in dishes and on the salad bar all summer long!