Imagine…perfectly crispy apples, luscious juicy mangoes, delicious sweet berries, and flawless yellow bananas. When was the last time you could honestly say that you bought one of these on campus? I think it’s pretty safe to say never.
Although Cornell does make an effort to provide us with pho bars, flatbreads and exotic soups, a decent, affordable whole fruit is nearly impossible to find. Most cafés on campus offer fruit cups consisting of mushy grapes, firm, unflavorful cantaloupe, gelatinous mangoes and oddly sweet yet sour pineapple, priced at $4. If you’re lucky, the dining halls might have green bananas and floury apples to take for later, but god forbid you take more than one.
It seems as though Cornell is trying to encourage healthy eating, but what they have done so far is inaccessible to students. Current options are overpriced and, for the most part, sub par. If you want truly healthy snacks you have to pencil in at least an hour and a half into your schedule to make a trip to Wegmans or Target by bus – and let’s be honest, no devoted Cornell student has that kind of time. What we really need is a convenient, affordable source of fresh, real produce.
As a university, we have pretty nice dining options that accommodate all sorts of dietary restrictions, but this is not enough. A greater effort to providing whole foods on campus should be made.
I have a business proposal for you ambitious Dyson kids out there: why not start a “Fresh Fruit Truck” and park it on the foot of North Campus or on Central and offer affordable fruits and vegetables for students who are seeking healthy alternatives?
Ultimately, as a university, we need to reevaluate our food options on campus to promote health and positive eating habits for our students.