About the Seasoned Spoon

The Seasoned Spoon is a non-profit, vegetarian, cooperative café located in Champlain College at Trent University. The café is committed to serving locally, and whenever possible, organically sourced food at affordable prices. Our food sourcing principles prioritize the cultivation of meaningful relationships with local producers and supports a sustainable regional agricultural system. We are proud of our strong community linkages with local producers, businesses and community organizations.  The Spoon cooperative has over 400 members, most of whom are staff and students of Trent University. Membership in the café is both a form of support for the cooperative and a structure to enable collective action that promotes small-scale production and helps to revitalize our regional agricultural system. 

As well as serving delicious seasonal food, a central part of our mandate as a not-for-profit community-based organization is to offer educational opportunities to the campus and broader Peterborough community. This is realized primarily through paid and volunteer work positions, reskilling workshops, panel discussions, community meals, and student research projects coordinated in partnership with the Trent Community Research Centre. We endeavour to act as a space on campus where members can increase their awareness of food issues and be inspired to action.  In partnership with the Trent Vegetable Gardens, we aspire to demonstrate a sustainable field-to-table campus food system.
 
Our History

From its grassroots origins, the Seasoned Spoon evolved from a Stone Soup Project on campus run by the OPIRG Food Issues Group (FIG). FIG started serving local, organic soup by donation in 2002. The Stone Soup project challenged the food service monopoly that Aramark had at Trent University, offering staff and students more diverse choices as well as food for thought about the prevailing institutional food policies. As the initiative grew the project elected a Board of Directors to better represent them. With their new business model, the now named Seasoned Spoon Café began working towards a more permanent place. Since that time, the Spoon has evolved from a group of committed volunteers serving soup every other week to a dynamic café open five days a week, with 17 staff, dozens of volunteers and over 400 cooperative members.

 
The Seasoned Spoon's grand opening took place on February 25th, 2003, in the Cat's Ass Pub in Otonabee College. In the Spring of 2003, the Spoon relocated to what was then the Champlain Junior Common Room and officially opened in that space on November 18th, 2003. In the fall of 2009, the Seasoned Spoon re-located once again, downstairs to the sunnier and more spacious Champlain Senior Common Room. We are grateful to all the dedicated Trent students, staff and volunteers who have helped make the Spoon what it is today.  Students and community members can now enjoy their soup while taking in the scenic view of the Otonabee River. Drop by to see for yourself!
 
A little bit about OPIRG
 
For the past quarter century, the Peterborough Chapter of the Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) has been pursuing social justice and environmental activism on the Trent campus and in the Peterborough community. Over time OPIRG has worked on a wide range of issues and has seen its alumni go on to contribute to other social justice and environmental movements. Today OPIRG continues to be a dynamic organization where many Trent students learn the skills and knowledge they need to become active and involved citizens. Find out more about OPIRG here.