HWS Food Week Underway – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

HWS Food Week Underway

As part of HWS Food Week, HWS community members have been enjoying events on campus ranging from panel discussions on veganism to an international potluck dinner at the Colleges’ Fribolin Farm. After the success of last year’s HWS Food Day celebrations, the Finger Lakes Institute, in collaboration with several other HWS and community organizations, expanded the one-day national event to include an entire weeks’ worth of food-themed activities on campus. HWS Food Week focuses on this year’s national Food Day Theme of food access and justice.

Food Day is a nationwide celebration and a movement for healthy, affordable and sustainable food that will occur on campuses across the country on Friday, Oct. 24. At HWS, more than a dozen clubs, departments, and organizations have come together to create a week-long celebration leading up to Food Day that offers plenty of opportunities for members of the HWS community to learn about the importance of maintaining and advocating for a more sustainable food system.

“We are recognizing Food Day throughout the entire week because there are so many interested departments wanting to recognize the importance of food,” says FLI Community Outreach Coordinator Sarah Meyer, who’s leading the Food Week Coordinating Committee. “I think it’s important to collaborate with multiple programs, clubs, offices, and community members so that we capture the different energy and passion behind the facets of our food system.”

HWS Food Week kicked off on Friday with a discussion event titled “Ecofeminism and Veganism: Feminist Intersections with other Animals & the Earth.” Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Joel Helfrich organized a panel of speakers from the Seneca Falls Dialogues conference being held in Seneca Falls to hold a discussion on campus open to students, faculty, staff and the community.

Helfrich says that the discussion at HWS attempted to highlight the various ways in which to create a more complete definition of ecofeminism by “linking ecofeminism to veganism, animal liberation and other social justice issues.” 

One of the highlights of last year’s Food Day celebrations was the Campus Farmers’ Market, which will be included again this year on Oct. 24 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the Scandling Campus Center rear patio. Local vendors and farmers will sell a variety of products including cheese, specialty mustards, jellies, maple products, eggs, and produce like beets, carrots, kale and much more.

Also scheduled during the farmers’ market is the Big Apple Crunch – a national effort to set the world record for the “most participants in an apple-crunching event” – as well as tabling by campus clubs and classes, a WHWS radio show, and free fabric bags from the BYOBagNY campaign.

“Food Week has the potential to bring the students and the community together,” says Mollie Kenerson ’15, co-president of the Sustainable Foods Club. “With events such as the Farmers’ Market, coordinated by the Finger Lakes Institute, students will be able to engage with farmers in-person. In supporting the vendors at the market, students will have the opportunity to speak with community members and better understand their role as consumers in this local market.”

The Sustainable Foods Club will host an interactive table at the Farmers’ Market where students will be able to “taste the difference” between mass produced goods and those made locally in Geneva and the Finger Lakes.

Meyer explains that one goal of Food Week is to provide a wide variety of events that will offer participants “unique, personal experiences.” Other events scheduled for Food Week include the “100 Mile Meal”; an international potluck dinner; a Food Photo Instagram Hashtag photo contest (#HWSFoodWeek) running throughout the week; the annual Day of Service; a Cayuga Creamery Ice Cream Stand and Sacheli’s Farm Food Truck; a showing of “Place at the Table” followed by a panel discussion; a “Fields of Food” harvest help; Sodexo Apple Tasting; a Campus Farm tour with visiting farm animals; and a WHWS Food Music radio show.

“Food is a common denominator among all people, it is a part of who we are, what we stand for and how we interact with the world around us,” Kenerson says. “What many people may not realize is that our consumption affects much more than just ourselves, when we buy local, sustainable foods we are supporting our local economy, workers, environment and body. This week helps to demonstrate just how influential our choices can be when we make them with intention.”

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