On Feb. 25, local and sustainable fruits and vegetables and locally-made bread filled The University of Texas East Mall for the first official UT Farm Stand.
Story by Alyssa Arnold
Illustrations by Sonia Margolin
From noon to 5:30 p.m., students flocked to the UT Farm Stand to buy fresh produce from Austin area vendors, including Johnson’s Backyard Garden, UT Microfarm and New World Bakery.
The UT Farm Stand is made possible by the Green Fee Committee, a sustainability initiative through the university where $5 from each tuition bill is put towards environmental projects. UT sustainability coordinator Neil Kaufman works as the liaison between the Division of Housing and Food Services and the UT Farm Stand team as administrative and purchasing support. “UT Farm Stand is not just a symbol, but an actual opportunity for students to choose and commit to sustainable living,” Kaufman says. Right now, the Farm Stand only has funding for five stands, but Kaufman hopes to see the UT Farm Stand continue to grow in future semesters.
Over a year ago, five students wrote the UT Farm Stand proposal for the Green Fee Committee. Environmental science junior Katherine Bui, one of the five students, says she was excited to see the first UT Farm Stand become such a success. Karlie Kramer, a UT Farm Stand volunteer and senior advertising major, agreed. “The farm stand really exceeded my expectations, especially since this was our first one,” Kramer says. “We had a great turnout and experienced a lot of positive vibes from people who were just really enthusiastic about local, sustainable food.” Kramer also says she hopes to see the UT Farm Stand expand to sell jams and honey in the near future.
The UT Farm Stand will be on the East Mall again on March 31 and on the West Mall on April 14 and April 27. Come out and support local Austin vendors and treat yourself to fresh, local produce.