Sustainable Food

This fun 6-part series unpacks sustainable, urban farming through the lens of the UW Farm. We learn about practices employed by the Farm that reduce carbon emissions, conserve water, and protect the health of nearby ecosystems. We also learn about the campus food system, how UW plans to make it more sustainable, and guidelines that can help other institutions lower environmental impacts associated with food. Most important, though, we are introduced to the students, faculty, and members of the public that make up the UW Farm community. Enjoy the videos!  

Video 1 - UW has a farm?!

This is the first video in our series with the UW Farm. Before we start discussing details about the UW Farm and its relationship with the University, we need to let more people know that the farm exists and where the growing sites are located!

Video 2 - Student Powered

In the intro video we learned that the UW Farm harvests up to 25,000 pounds of fresh produce annually. And in this video we see what makes this possible - the support of students! Hundreds of Huskies volunteer each season, and a few of them explain in this fun video what draws them to the UW Farm.

Video 3 - Local Inputs & Outputs 

The UW Farm strives to be an example of sustainable, urban farming. Most inputs are sourced locally. And the food harvested by students does not travel far! This means emissions tied to the farm are much smaller compared to industrial models. Fresh, local, and less harmful for the environment - that tastes good to us!

Video 4 - Water Sustainability

The UW Farm conserves a lot of water! With support from organizations on campus, the farm has been able to invest in equipment and infrastructure that allows crops to be grown in a water-efficient manner. Sensible farming practices are also selected that protect the health of nearby waterways. Check out this awesome video to learn more!

Video 5 - Sustainability Action Plan

The UW Farm is committed to helping the University of Washington fulfill the goals outlined in its Sustainability Action Plan. Food sustainability is a top target in this plan, and so UW has pledged to purchase at least 35% of food from local sources by 2025. The farm must embrace change to better support this purchasing target, but that won't be a problem!

Video 6 - Beyond Campus 

This is the final video in our series! It discusses how institutions can use their purchasing power in food markets to support local farmers and suppliers. By adopting targets similar to UW's - 35% of food from local sources - other institutions can lower environmental impacts connected to the food they purchase. Help encourage these institutional targets!

 

Thanks for watching! To make our food system more sustainable, individual changes and institutional changes will be needed. So try and purchase more food from local, organic farmers. And request that institutions do the same. And if you want to experience a local example of sustainable food systems, then just walk on down to the UW Farm!