The Conservation Committee of the Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections has asked us to distribute this survey on Food in Museums at

Details are below:

spnhcMuseums, people and food are closely tied together. From staff members’ brown bag lunches to the cafeteria to a catered donor event, food service is a necessity in modern museums and institutions.

At the most basic level, food vendors feed visitors and generate revenue. A strong partnership between museums and food vendors nourishes people and the delivery of the museum’s mission. The focus on healthy, sustainable nutrition also fits well into the educational mission of the museum field. 

On the other hand, the presence of food in the museum presents a challenge to the long-term preservation of museum collections. The risk of pest infestation and soiling of collections is real. Incorrect disposal of food waste and insufficient house-keeping both contribute to pest infestation while food and beverages carried through areas with collections can spill and soil objects, causing damage which may not be reversible.

The Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections is gathering background information through a questionnaire to establish the current state of food management within museums and institutions internationally.

We would be extremely grateful if you could fill out the questionnaire before June 1