IOEE Centre of Excellence Manchester Metropolitan University has recently launched GROW! Grow is a place like no other at Manchester Met. It’s a space to eat, an environment to learn, a platform to create… it’s a place to grow.

GROW is the result of a pioneering collaboration between sustainability and wellbeing champions MetMUnch and the University’s Catering team. It features a meat-free café run by students and a packed programme of activities promoting healthy habits.

Students and staff can look forward to a wide range of healthy options, from high-protein vegan brownies to brain-boosting bagels. Produce will be sourced from local businesses, with vegetables coming from local farmers and the bread is sourced from one of the city’s top artisan bakeries.

The team behind GROW also want students to be directly involved in the change they are trying to make. The first batch of highly nutritious salads has been developed in collaboration between one of the University’s Nutritional Sciences students, Hannah Morgan, alongside MetMUnch’s founder and registered nutritionist and entrepreneur Haleh Moravej and the University’s Executive Chef, Phil Rhodes. It’s this type of enterprising behaviour at the University which has seen them become an IOEE Centre of Excellence championing enterprise across the UK.

Hannah said: “I have been involved in developing the MetMUnch salads that will be sold in the café and it has been a pleasure to experiment with my creativity! Developing products is my passion, and I truly believe they have turned out better than I could’ve imagined. It is also a great

16 | Think Enterprise

opportunity to have students working in GROW as it has the potential to enhance confidence and really increase the feeling of being part of the community.”

Research shows that students are six times as likely to try and then stick to different lifestyle diets like veganism and vegetarianism, while 69 per cent of students mention that the rise of various contemporary food trends are shaping the way they think about food.

GROW will be a soothing and inspiring place to relax, featuring furniture that has been repurposed, recycled, reclaimed or restored from some fascinating Mancunian locales. There’ll also be plenty of food for thought, from getting hands-on with horticulture to relaxing mindfulness and yoga sessions with MMU Sport held in the space.

Mike Sheppard, Director of Estates, Facilities and Capital Development, said GROW is a forward-thinking culinary concept that goes ‘beyond eating’.

“MetMUnch has consistently delivered their unique brand of nutritious, sustainable, delicious and ambitious food on campus and now with collaboration with Catering Team, we are putting students firmly in charge. This is a shining example of how students, academic colleagues and Estates and Facilities staff can work together to demonstrate the benefits of our Journey to Service Excellence.”