Indian Harvest, a culinary company that supplies food service businesses with whole grains, rice and legumes, held a sampling event for students in the Appalachian Collegiate Center on Thursday.
Chef Chris Bybee from Indian Harvest came to Binghamton University to showcase some of the company’s products.
“We’re looking for feedback to see if it’s a nice fit and [we’re] also trying to make everything allergen free,” Bybee said.
The event featured free samples of various types of quinoa and jasmine rice dishes, including Latin chipotle quinoa salad with roasted corn and avocado, Caribbean tropical red quinoa fruit and nut salad, Peruvian tri-color quinoa with grilled chicken, black quinoa Asian slaw and jasmine rice prepared with turmeric.
Both quinoa and jasmine rice can be used as substitutes and healthier alternatives to nutrition-lacking starches such as white rice, which contains less protein and fiber and more calories and glucose, according to Bybee.
Robert Griffin, district marketing manager, said that Binghamton University is striving to have healthier food selections.
“There are a couple of different primary things,” Griffin said. “We have been making a conservative effort to focus on health and wellness and to focus on that need. Indian Harvest is a supplier that we can purchase those products from to highlight the availability of health and wellness products on campus.”
According to Griffin, Indian Harvest has been planning to come to BU since the summer.
“Indian Harvest made an offer to us, they knew where we were going with our health and wellness efforts,” Griffin said. “They said if we have an opportunity for them to come out, they will.”
Griffin said there are many benefits of having Indian Harvest at BU.
”We’re happy to have good partners to help showcase some of what we do in a different way,” Griffin said. “Having the vendors here talking about the products they make creates a great opportunity for students to ask questions. It’s why we do these things.”
Tyler Miller, a sophomore majoring in economics, sampled all of the items that were available.
“I really liked the chicken quinoa,” Miller said. “I liked being able to try new foods that I’ve never tried before. Binghamton should do things like this more often.”
Jash Mathuria, a sophomore majoring in finance, enjoyed the food at the event.
“I like when the dining hall has different kinds of options that are different from the usual menu,” Mathuria said. “The food was pretty good.”
Items from the Indian Harvest menu are scheduled to be featured on the NourishU market fresh bars in all of the dining halls.