Welcome to Davidson College’s Food & Sustainability initiative. With support from The Duke Endowment, we’re collecting the stories and researching the issues that are defining the movement. So what is sustainability in the first place? Does it mean you recycle? Turn the lights off when you leave the room? Limit the time you shower? Yes and no. These are all smaller components of the bigger picture. Below are three definitions that capture the essence and importance of sustainability in a single sentence.

Sustainability Defined

Triple Bottom Line

Triple Bottom Line

For a business, society or lifestyle to be sustainable—to last for the long haul—it has to consider the whole or “triple” bottom line: people, planet, and profit. No component is more important than any other.

The Law of the Iroquois

“In every deliberation we make, we must consider the impact on the seventh generation.”

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Brundtland Commission

The Brundtland Commission Definition

“Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

 

The DFS Story

The Davidson Food System Process

When was the last time you looked at your plate and wondered, “Huh, where did this food come from?” Most of us are guilty of taking for granted the hard work that went into prepping the fields, growing, harvesting, transporting, and preparing the food before it reaches our plate. Food systems unveil the journey our food undertakes to reach us.

The food system at Davidson College is comprised of the campus’ dining services, the college farm, national and local food providers, and the campus compost facility. Dining services purchases food from both local and national providers. Food waste on campus is then composted and used on campus grounds.

 

Food Issues

Culture & Food

Societies generally center traditional holidays and customs around preparing and sharing food with family or the community. Traditional dishes embrace long-standing traditions.

Fair Labor

Small communities, often in third world countries, can fall prey to large corporations that seek to exploit their resources. Organizations, like Fair Trade, work to combat this exploitation.

Food & Identity

Traditional dishes and cooking techniques originate from the experiences, values, available crops, technology, and needs of unique communities. With rapid globalization, individuals manage to retain their mother culture by preparing these dishes.

Food Justice

Thousands of people live in areas with no access to fresh and healthy food. These places are referred to as “food deserts” and often disproportionately affect low income neighborhoods.

Culture & Food

Societies generally center traditional holidays and customs around preparing and sharing food with family or the community. Traditional dishes embrace long-standing traditions.

Fair Labor

Small communities, often in third world countries, can fall prey to large corporations that seek to exploit their resources. Organizations (for example, Fair Trade) work to combat this exploitation.

Food & Identity

Traditional dishes and cooking techniques originate from the experiences, values, available crops, technology, and needs of unique communities. With rapid globalization, individuals manage to retain their mother culture by preparing these dishes.

Food Justice

Thousands of people live in areas with no access to fresh and healthy food. These places are referred to as “food deserts” and often disproportionately affect low income neighborhoods.

How to Get Involved

 

When students learned about food sustainability issues they took it upon themselves to learn more and make a change. Below are some of the many impressive projects that have started because of the hard work of students and staff:


  • On-site compost program with Vail Commons and Davis Café.

  • Creation of the self-sustained Davidson College Farm. Theresa Allen and involved students dedicate their time to growing a variety of crops naturally. These crops are served in Vail Commons to the student body.

  • Develop mobile app; promote

  • Zero-Waste athletic games

  • Hosting the Next-Play competition to promote sustainable businesses

  • Bike Share program

So how can you get involved, you ask? Great question! We could always use a helping hand with any number of projects going on. Fill out the volunteer form below and we will get back to you to match you to an opportunity that matches your interests.

Sign Up to Volunteer!

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