UMass Amherst named best campus food in the nation for sixth consecutive year

The rankings are based on surveys of 160,000 students at the schools in the guide.
Published: Aug. 22, 2022 at 4:57 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 29, 2022 at 6:37 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - UMass Amherst has been named the number one best campus food by the Princeton Review for the sixth year in a row.

“Six years running, it is a quite an honor and it all goes to the students,” said Garett DiStefano, director of dining at UMass Amherst.

DiStefano told Western Mass News why their dining services stand out as the Princeton Review ranked them the top campus when it comes to food for the sixth year in a row.

“We are serving healthy, sustainable, delicious foods everyday…We serve over 50,000 meals. We have not only the number one program in the nation, but the largest program in the nation and with that, we also source sustainable food from over a hundred different farmers all across Massachusetts and New England,” DiStefano added.

DiStefano said last year alone, UMass spent over $3 million on local farmers in Massachusetts and a little over $5 million in New England,

What do students think about the food?

“I love to get the desserts. The cookies and cakes are amazing, so it’s a good way to spoil yourself after a long day,” said UMass senior Ananya Aro.

“So far, I think it’s living up to its expectations. I’ve only been to [Berkshire Dining Commons] and Worcester [Dining Commons], so I’m gonna go check out [Hampshire Dining Commons] in a few minutes, but so far, it’s been pretty good,” said UMass freshman Jaiden Watson.

What is the most popular food option on-campus?

“Well, we have to start off with the sushi. We serve over 5,000 sushi rolls every day, hand rolled, and our students are even part of that,” DiStefano explained.

He added, “Now, stir fry is an amazing thing. Students wait and pick their different vegetables and have them wait to order…Now, we have things like Tandor, which is featured Middle Eastern cuisine, our Latin station which we serve food from 28 different Latin countries, as well as folks on a more plant-forward diet with some of our healthy eating.”

The overall goal is, according to DiStefano, “We want to help students do their best through college, as well as show them some ways to eat great from all over the world,”

The national recognition makes it all worth the effort.

“A great, humbling honor and so happy for staff and they are very passionate and work hard and of course, the students. They are happy for supporting us and this is a good report card,” said UMass Executive Director of Auxilliary Enterprises Ken Toong.