Does Student Farming Experience Lead to Shifts in Food Choices

By: Elizabeth Wheat  

This research focuses on how and if participation at the student farm impacts students behavior and choices around food. We preformed a series of interviews and pre and post surveys to better understand how students are impacted by their experiences at the student farm and if these experiences lead to changes in behavior and attitudes toward sustainably produced foods. Our hypothesis is that exposure to locally grown and sustainably produced foods will cause students to preferentially choose these foods. We also suspect that experiences working with food production on campus will heighten student awareness of the societal implications of food production both in terms of environmental consequences and social justice. Our research explores the importance of on campus food production at a publicly funded, non land-grant institution.

"Campus Farm", " Sustainability", " Food Production"
Food Production and Sustainability
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Elizabeth Wheat

I am a lecturer in the Environmental Studies department at the University of Washington. I teach courses related to food production and agroecology. I have been involved in supporting the UW Student farm and other food and sustainability projects on our campus. My research interests are in the arena of food production and sustainability. In addition to the work I am presenting at this conference I am also involved in several research projects - one exploring the relationship between in-class reflection and meditation on learning outcomes and the other is measuring the carbon sequestration potential in soils using compost. Aside from my work as a Lecturer I own and operate a 20 acre integrated vegetable farm on Whidbey Island, WA.