The University of Rhode Island’s Slow Food group reintroduced their local foods market this past Monday, following its absence from campus for the past several semesters.
This return of the market offers new experiences and tastes to freshmen and upperclassmen alike, since the group has recruited three new vendors.
President of URI Slow Food Kayleigh Hill has worked behind the scenes for several months by reaching out to vendors new and old, not all of which chose to return or partake. Hill described the return of the local foods market as something the URI Slow Food group is “picking up from scratch and making it [their] own again.” Â Following the graduation of the group’s former president, existing members were left with no direction or guidance as to how to continue the group’s legacy.
Members of URI Slow Food believe that the market is an important option for students, helping to expose them to local food vendors and producers. Active member Olivia Harrison said she sees the market as an opportunity for students “to try all the different foods that are out there and not be limited just because they don’t have a car and are living on a college campus.”
Vice President Emily Desrochers agreed with the points made by Harrison, but also encouraged the support for local producers. “It’s an experience worth sharing with the student body,” Desrochers said.
For upperclassmen who can still recall, there will be some familiar vendors from the market’s past. The Coffee Guy, brewed and run by owner Steve Demeter out of a commercial facility in Middletown, will again be offering students a variety of options from cold and hot roasts to organics and non-organics. Â
Also returning to their usual spot in front of the union, weather permitting, is Wicked Good Kettle Corn. Unlike other venders, owner Richard Toas continued to market to URI students while the market was out of commission, even covering several football games last years. Originating in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, Wicked Good Kettle Corn has been coming to URI for four years now.
New vender Angelo Mollis of Fully Rooted, a cold-press fruit and vegetable juicing company, shares the Slow Food group’s initiative of clean eating and sustainable living by offering deals to students who return with his reusable jars. The juices, which are based out of a kitchen in West Warwick, boast a shelf life of up to three days. Though there was not a large variety of options, students do have the choices of various add-ins and sizes.
Also new to the local foods market are Sweet Cakes of Peace Dale and DELIcious Deli of Cranston. Both of the vendors carry the market’s themes of locally sourced ingredients and products.
The URI Slow Food Group will be hosting the local foods market every Monday this semester in Atrium 1 of the Union, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The market is anticipated to move out to the Quadrangle later this semester when the weather dictates.