Food Awareness on Campus: “Nothing With A Face Food Festival.”
Description & Overview:
The idea is for a “day long series of workshops and cooking demos and eating focused on vegan food” on campus, in an attempt to encourage more vegetarianism in food choices among people. There will be focus on vegans and vegetarian options, but the main objective will be to attract skeptics of vegan options and promote more vegetarian and “flexitarian” eating, for the purpose of decreasing meat consumption, more than being just a simple day-event.
There will be two primary goals: one is to raise awareness of the costs of meat based diets, which itself comes in two forms. First is economical/environmental: vast quantities of various resources, mainly water and feed, are required to produce meat for human consumption. By reducing consumption the money can be saved and redirected towards other efforts, as well as being less of a strain on natural resources. The other is health; given that meat heavy diets tend to be less good for health (particularly red meat), lower consumption may reduce disease and obesity. This is a rather grey line, and is something to be determined.
Work will be done with Chartwells and the Healthy Bishop Initiative to plan this event, and hopefully have effects beyond that.
Various options will be given, but the ultimate goal is to convince people of the benefits of a vegetarian or vegan diet, or partial vegetarian diets. Little will be accomplished without support and favorable opinions. To that end:
- The term “diet” should be avoided as it immediately projects the idea of eating less, which is not a very important goal. Alternatively, “diet” should be defined well to people as simply “what we eat on a day to day basis,” although this will take significantly more effort.
- Conversion to total vegetarianism or veganism isn’t necessary or practical: simple meat reduction will suffice. On this, one can promote ideas such as “meat free Monday” which will have a significant impact towards reducing meat, without requiring anyone to “give it all up”
- People should be convinced that there are good tasting meatless meals. Salads when done well, for example, as well as the myriad of other non-meat products that one typically eats with meat: for example, potato products, bread and spread, etc. None should be forced on those whose genetics make them avert to certain types of food (I, for one, can’t stand celery, caffeine, and sweet potatoes)
Hopefully, the long term will show, if nothing else, an increase in more efficient eating habits, such as asking about the vegan meal options in Welch trattoria or more demand for the salad bar.
- Work done on average effects of more vegetable on dietary requirements
- Determine which options are best for college students: this means not only nutritional information, but convenience: what foods and meals are easier/faster to prepare, to complement the lifestyle
- Final outcome: how to determine the effects on the student and staff populace
- Will there be demand for Chartwells to run any changes to campus food offerings?
- An anonymous poll to determine the effects of the event? (and a prize draw?)
- Meet with “Dell”
- Find similar school programs as proof of concept
- Find others:
- Portia’s Creations
- Columbus startup vegan community
- “Kevin” from community market
- Digitize cookbook and information
- DIY food and accessibility (kitchen, ingredients)
- Hopefully, a full day event in the HWCC
- Meatless Monday runs for Chartwells: offer more options rather than taking them away
- Adding new options overall for on-the-go foods (see science center, university carts, HWCC, Welch Hall)