The incredible edible project aims to place planting containers in which fruit and vegetables have been growing for a number of weeks in the foyer of buildings.
Students and staff will then be free to pick and take freshly grown produce as they please.
Anyone keen to help launch the project was invited to attend a meeting to discuss the idea in St John’s MCR on Tuesday evening.
In the description of the Facebook event for the meeting, the project specifically mentions “tomatoes” as well as “beans and lettuce” that you can “pick and cook with”.
OUSU’s VP for Charities and Community Emily Silcock is in charge of the project. She told Cherwell, “This campaign is only just getting off the ground (literally) at the moment. People can contact me if they would like any more information at this stage.”
Oxford VegSoc commented enthusiastically, “As VegSoc we think it’s great that more and more people are thinking about the wider implications about what they eat and buy. Of course we are in support of any other initiatives that focus on where food comes from and reducing our environmental impact by sourcing produce locally.”
However, Incredible Edible has equally been met by scepticism. Second year student Jack Harrison raised concern over how OUSU will fund the project and told Cherwell, “I’m glad my £9,000 tuition fees are being spent wisely on subsidising tomatoes, instead of being wasted on something pointless like making sure I have more than one compulsory contact hour a week.”
Undergraduate Louisa Keech said, “I think the vegetable planting is a really nice idea, but I can imagine that a few tomato plants in every faculty will not actually feed many people. It seems like a good idea, but rather unrealistic. It would perhaps be best if the point of the project was to make people aware of where their food comes from and how long it takes to grow, rather than to advertise it as free food.”
Charlotte Molony, a second year student at St Catz, added, “I’m also not sure about the practicalities of this idea, but it’s a great incentive to encourage students to have a balanced diet.”