The Student Kitchen: one idea, one vision, a team of 5 first-year university girls to fight for it.
The project of having a sustainable student-run café started quite spontaneously, given the majority of people’s passion for food after coming to the conclusion that if we want to make an impact in terms of sustainability, what we eat is where we should start from.
What began almost like a joke, soon became a serious matter which the more it grew the more we in the team felt committed to make it happen. The more difficulties we found, the more innovations we added to the original plan, and the more we learned. We went from having little to no knowledge on business planning to mastering one in less than a week.
But… who is “we”? That’s the amazing executive team members of this great, crazy and important project: Evelina, Indy, Camilla, Martina & Anastasia. All from different cultural backgrounds and experiences but with the same dream, the one of a better society which takes care of the planet we all live in and which promotes a healthy and sustainable way of living.
Food is something that everyone has an interest about (either when it comes to cooking, eating or both). It connects people, it literally makes us since is the source of our nutrients, vitamins and minerals. What we eat, not only affects us individually but it also is what affects the environment the most. Food production and waste are the major contributors to climate change. The major point we want to make is that plant-based food does not have to be something complicated with exotic and expensive ingredients. On the contrary, the healthiest food is the least processed, the one that you can have control on the ingredients. It can actually be very cheap, especially given the relatively high cost of meat compared to vegetables. We became so used to have every ingredient at our disposition regardless of the season, to have perfectly shaped and sized shiny fruits and vegetables, to have pre-made food that comes in cans, packages and that is full of chemicals and preservatives that do not even exist in nature and which, in the long run can harm our health. We forgot how exciting and fun eating can really be, we forgot about its benefits on us and on the planet.
If we can all learn how to eat good food that does not harm the enviroment and make us more efficient and healthy then, even if the path is long, at least one step (one of the biggest) has been done towards a sustainable society.
At the end, despite all the hard work we had put in the project, we did not win the bid, but we gained a lot of experience and we understood that there are several ways to be sustainable and to spread the message. Obviously we did not give up on our ideals, which are even stronger than before, but we did not take the outcome as a “loss”.