Williams College Sustainable Food & Agriculture Program


Evolving campus foodways


by Celeste Berg ’13

“I used to not care, but now every living, breathing moment centers around the relationship we’ve...

Ackerman-Leist's new book, Rebuilding the Foodshed, offers case studies of regional foodsheds and principles for developing enduring food systems.

by Celeste Berg ’13

Philip Ackerman-Leist is all about the practical. On the evening of Wednesday, February 13th, the author,...

Permaculture Conference

In June, Cedar Blazek ’13, Alix Wicker ’14, and Gabi Azevedo ’15 attended the Permaculture Your Campus conference at the...

All-campus 5

by Isaac Maze-Rothstein ’14

At Williams College, a working committee of staff, faculty, and students use Real Food Challenge guidelines...


by Celeste Berg ’13

On Monday, April 22, Williams College embarked on No Impact Week, a one-week carbon cleanse that...

Students make bread with Lead Baker Michael Menard.

Three weeks was just enough time. By January 24th, the ten students in the winter study course Elementary Cooking Techniques...

BBH sprouts

Will Raskin documented food production and consumption in the Berkshires and southern Vermont this summer. A reception will be held...

Amelia making salami at Salumificio Santoro

Meat culture in Italy
by Amelia Simmons ’13

For eight weeks, through a generous Wilmer’s Summer Travel Fellowship, I...

150 Mile Meals

It won’t be business as usual in the Williams College dining halls on April 22nd this year. In support of...


by Malik Nashad Sharpe ’14
What linkages can we form between experimental art making and practice, discourse on environmental...

Stinking Bishop: “It smells like sweaty trainers, doesn’t it?”

by Celeste Berg ’13

Dr. Diane Purkiss, Fellow in English and historian from Oxford’s Keble College, opened her presentation on...

Topher Sabot '99 surveys the pastures with students.

400 pounds of seed potatoes waited for students in Professor Henry Art’s Sustainable Agriculture course when they arrived at Caretaker...


On March 10, 2012, students in Deborah Brothers’ costume design class explored the range of colors made possible by onions,...

purple potato

What is Food at Lunch?
Discuss food themes over lunch this fall! Food at Lunch features two meals a...

Parson’s Garden on our first day

By Josh Morrison ’16

June 14, 2013: Momentarily banished from the garden by the steady onslaught of cold rain that...

Lucy Bergwall ’15, Sara Clark ’15, Robin Gimm ’14, and Josh Morrison ’16 learned about permaculture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in June, 2013.

by Lucy Bergwall ’15, Sara Clark ’15, Robin Gimm ’14, and Josh Morrison ’16

On a Tuesday in late June,...

Photo by Brett Chedzoy, Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Schuyer County

by Eric Hagen ’14

Earlier this winter I made a very good decision. I decided to drop by Brent Wasser’s...


Maple Fest Marks the End of an Early Sap Run
Drew Jones, manager of Hopkins Memorial Forest, tends the...

Students ride to visit Cricket Creek Farm in Williamstown on a sunny May morning. Real Food Williams, a student group advocating sustainable food, organized the event.

Read about the past, present, and future of the Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives.
Annual Update 2013 (PDF)

Stina Kutzer, owner of Gammelgården Creamery in Pownal, VT, hangs bags of Skyr to drain. Her Skyr is available at the EcoCafé in Morley Science Center.

by Hannah Smith’15

This semester I have had the opportunity to work at Gammelgården Creamery in Pownal, VT, which is...


by Haley Mahar ’16 and Sasha Langesfeld ’17

The motto for the Revisioning Sustainability conference is “Campuses as Catalysts for...

Just Food Conference panel discussion

by Andrea Lindsay ’13

As an Environmental Policy major and Latina/o Studies concentrator, I have spent most of my time...

The Mirror Visions Ensemble

Mirror Visions.indd

September 27

8:00 p.m.

Brooks-Rogers Recital Hall


Sheep at Sheep Hill

Sheep at Sheep Hill7










September 27

Come to the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation on Saturday to hear Dr. Gary Kleppel of University at Albany speak about the ecological benefits of sheep grazing. Meet the sheep and enjoy a lamb dinner. Advance registration is necessary. Visit to sign up.

Sheep at Sheep Hill:
a presentation and lamb dinner

Poster link:

Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation
671 Cold Spring Road
Williamstown, MA 01267

Event schedule:
3:00 p.m. Pasture walk and sheep management tour
4:00 p.m. Fiber spinning and weaving demonstration
5:00 p.m. Lamb dinner prepared by Chef Greg Roach of Wild Oats Market
6:30 p.m. Speaker Dr. Gary Kleppel, University at Albany

Registration information:
The pasture walk and presentations are free. Dinner is $25.00 per person. Register for the dinner at, or use the link provided at

Contact with questions.

Sheep at Sheep Hill is a collaboration of the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation, Wild Oats Market, Black Queen Angus Farm, Pine Cobble School, and the Williams College Sustainable Food & Agriculture Program.



The Farm School

earlymorningcowchoreNow accepting applications for the fall

May 5, 7:00 p.m.

Career Center

Meet Nick Martinelli ’00, current student in The Farm School’s Learn to Farm program, and learn more about the school’s unique one-year farmer training program which is now accepting applicants for fall 2014. The presentation will take place Monday, May 5th at 7 p.m. in the Career Center on Park Street.

The tuition-based Learn to Farm program blends classroom and field instruction in vegetable crop production, livestock management, business planning, product marketing, and a variety of practical skills including carpentry and welding. Graduates gain the essential skills needed to run a diverse farm operation, homestead, or other farming or food-related venture.

This session is appropriate for all students. First-year students, sophomores, and juniors are encouraged to attend.


Dave Arnold

Arnold poster 1Science and Technology in the Kitchen

April 9 at 8:00 p.m.

Bronfman Auditorium

Food experimentalist Dave Arnold will visit Williams College on Wednesday, April 9, to deliver a talk and demonstration on food science. The event will take place at 8 p.m. in the Bronfman Science Center Auditorium. It is free and open to the public.

“His presentation is a wonderful example of interdisciplinary collaboration at Williams,” says Darra Goldstein, Willcox B. and Harriet M. Adsit Professor of Russian, who is teaching a sociology course this semester called Food and Society. At the same time, Jay Thoman, J. Hodge Markgraf Professor of Chemistry, is teaching the Chemistry and Physics of Cooking, and Goldstein says Arnold was invited to campus “because he can speak to the science of food as well as its cultural implications.” While at Williams, Arnold also will speak to Goldstein’s class about taste perception through technological manipulation.

Arnold’s presentation will demonstrate principles of physics and chemistry with a focus on heat transfer and low-temperature cooking. “I hope that his visit will help students realize that food is not only worthy of study and reflection, but fascinating in its multidisciplinary possibilities,” says Brent Wasser, manager of the Sustainable Food and Agriculture Program in Williams’ Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives.

Arnold holds an M.F.A. from Columbia University’s School of the Arts, is an award-winning food writer and contributing editor at Food Arts, and has been featured in Food & Wine, TIME, The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, The Economist, and Popular Science. He founded the Museum of Food and Drink and owns and operates Booker and Dax, a food and drink research lab that operates a cocktail bar in New York City.

This event is sponsored by the Lecture Committee, the departments of Chemistry, German and Russian, and Anthropology and Sociology, and the Williams College Sustainable Food and Agriculture Program.



Goats in the Woods

Photo by Brett Chedzoy

Photo by Brett Chedzoy

April 22, beginning at 4:00 p.m.

Pine Cobble School

This community celebration of goats features a goat meal prepared by Wild Oats Market and a presentation by Dr. Peter Smallidge, NYS Extension Forester and the Director of the Cornell University Arnot Teaching and Research Forest.

There will be a visit to the goats kept in the woods at Pine Cobble School at 4:00 p.m. Dinner is at 5:00 p.m. The presentation is at 6:30 p.m.

The meal prepared by Greg Roach at Wild Oats Market, “A Study in African Goat Cuisine,” includes Nigerian goat and ground nut stew, brown rice, Ethiopian-style greens, Moroccan curried goat, couscous, carrot fennel tajine, flatbreads, green salad Massachusetts-style with dried cranberries and goat’s cheese, and a Vermont-style apple, goat’s cheese, and honey tart. The meal is $15.00. Free child care is provided by  Pine Cobble School staff and volunteers and includes a free children’s dinner.

Please register for the meal and child care needs at

Peter Smallidge works for Cornell University through extension and applied research.  Peter is the NYS Extension Forester and the Director of the Cornell University Arnot Teaching and Research Forest.  These activities take him throughout the state serving woodland owners and maple producers.  As Arnot Forest Director, Peter provides leadership for the production, management, research and extension activities working with a core of dedicated and capable county and campus colleagues. Peter coordinates ForestConnect, Cornell’s Forest Resources Extension Program, by providing leadership for education to enhance the sustainability and stewardship of private forest lands in New York.

This event is sponsored by the Williams College Sustainable Food & Agriculture Program, Wild Oats Market, and Pine Cobble School.

Goats in the Woods











Fresh Fest Film Series 2014

Images Cinema

February 28–March 2

Visit the Images Cinema website at

Friday, 2/28

5:00 p.m.: A Place at the Table

TableProfiles of three people suffering hunger in the United States serve to show the serious economic, social, and cultural implications of food insecurity for our nation.




“The film explains with devastating simplicity why so many go hungry in a country with more than enough food to go round.”—London Evening Standard







Saturday, 3/1

10:30 a.m.–6:15 p.m.: TEDx Manhattan: Changing the Way We Eat

This screening is in Thompson Chemistry Lab’s Wege Auditorium at Williams College.

TedxThis is a live-stream broadcast from the event, shown in Wege Auditorium all day. 17 speakers will talk about food policy and hunger, sustainable agriculture and philanthropy, food racism, school food, local food distribution, and more.


Come and go as you please. The broadcast will run continuously. This event will feature scheduled brownie feeds supplied by Wildflour Bakery!


A new batch of brownies will emerge about every two hours.
Brownie feed schedule:
10:15 a.m.
12:30 p.m.
2:30 p.m.
4:30 p.m.


3:00 p.m.: After Winter, Spring
After winterFarmers in the Périgord region of southwest France face the challenges of small-sclae farming in a changing economy.
“In an era of rapid growth of mega-farms, the encroachment of suburbia, new European Union rules, and reductions of agricultural subsidies, these farmers—young and old—are forced to confront challenges that threaten the very existence of their small farms.”—from the film’s website



5:00 p.m. Soul Food Junkies
SoulThe film considers the cultural importance and nutritional questions surrounding soul food.
“This is not just another food film. It is a heartfelt story of family and community. It is also a trenchant ethnography that unpacks the role of “Soul Food” in the historical resistance of African Americans to slavery, Jim Crow and modern-day racism.”—Huffington Post




Sunday, 3/2

3:00 p.m.: Leviathan
leviathanA product of the sensory ethnography lab at Harvard, this film captures the visceral experience of commercial fishing out of New Bedford, MA.
“A staggering thrill-ride of an experience, built on moments of astonishing cinematic immediacy, Leviathan marks a major leap forward in nonfiction filmmaking.”—Robert Green, Filmmaker MagazineCome to a live streaming broadcast of