Giving sustainability a scrumptious spin
Out of the many clubs promoting sustainability on campus, Terra Café is definitely the yummiest one. They’ve partnered with Sodexo to bring affordable and alternative dining options every Wednesday.
Located in the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, Terra Café tries to use local produce as often as they can when making these meals. While not every ingredient is available year-round in upstate New York, they do their best to source locally.
Over the semesters, Terra has hosted meals with a variety of multicultural clubs on campus; they try to honor original recipes brought forth by other clubs, as best they can, while knowing that not every necessary ingredient may be available at any given time. Some recipes have included poke, arroz con pollo, penne with bolognese, beef kaldereta, and pernil. Additionally, Terra uses QR codes to ask students on campus for recipe suggestions. This student input is then passed on to their chef, who decides whether the recipe is feasible or not.
Aside from the delicious meals, Terra has worked to minimize campus waste by not giving out plastic bags, as well as encouraging people to bring their own food containers when buying food at Terra Café. In past semesters, club members used to compost food waste on campus, and they are working with administrators to bring composting back. Along with efforts on campus, the club has broadened its community reach by donating any tips earned from meals to local organizations.
When talking to co-presidents Maya Ooki ’20 and Maya Navabi ’20, they both shared a sense of pride in the student involvement within Terra. It is clear that club members are dedicated to promoting sustainability on campus. During cafe hours, students and campus staff engage in wonderful conversations about environmental activism, often started by facts shared about sustainability.
Ooki and Navabi also emphasized that Terra is always looking for new members to join by either showing up to club meetings or by simply helping serve meals. If you help serve a meal at Terra for a couple of hours, you eat for free!
Club meetings are on Tuesdays from 4–5 pm in the Patroon Room in the Union. Stop by if you are interested in learning more about Terra’s sustainability initiatives. You can also check out the weekly Terra Café events on Wednesdays from 11–3 pm, and either help serve food or grab a meal yourself.