Monday, November 27, 2006

News: How ‘Bout Them Apples?

Sustainability Committee Bobs Local in the Courtyard

Bite this: Sustainablity Committee VP Rachel London snags a Hudson Valley apple.

Written by Julia Schweizer & Photographed by Kaitlin McQuaide

      “Put your head in deeper! Push it up against the side! Bob!” demanded Rachael London, the vice president of the Lang Sustainability Committee and referee of an apple-bobbing contest held in the courtyard on November 15.
The contest was organized by the Sustainability Committee to raise funds and highlight their current campaign to get Chartwells, the New School’s food service company, to provide local food options on campus. In keeping with the goal, the apples floating in buckets of ice-cold water were locally grown and bought from the Union Square Greenmarket.
      The event encouraged students to have fun partaking in a fall pastime not often experienced in New York City.
      According to James Subudhi, president of the committee, local food means fresher food. “Local food reduces carbon dioxide emissions by reducing the distance your food travels from farm to table,” he said.
      Local food also supports small, non-corporate farms, Subudhi said. Furthermore, he added, “local food can be used as an educational tool, because it teaches consumers about where their food comes from.”
      In the courtyard, there were homemade baked goods and soup (all made with local ingredients) as well as handmade sock monkeys for sale. Passersby were enticed to stop and chat about the benefits of local food with committee members and drink free hot apple cider.
      One unexpected visitor was New School President Bob Kerrey, who agreed to sign the committee’s petition to get local food on campus.
      “I quickly explained the health benefits of local food, then talked about the benefits of stimulating the local economy,” said committee member and Lang senior Ryan Wood. “From the start, he was very willing to listen and quite supportive of the whole idea.”
      Kathleen Breidenbach, Associate Dean at Lang, and Joel Towers, Director of the Tischman Environment and Design Center, also showed their support by signing. These signatures appear next to over 100 other New School students and faculty members.
      The Committee plans to present the petition to Chartwells when they have completed additional research on local food.

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