ARMONK, N.Y. – Byram Hills High School environmental science students recently visited Mount Kisco’s Cabbage Hill Farm and Table Local Market in Bedford Hills for what turned out to be quite the tasty field trip.
Students witnessed farm-to-table food production, which they have been studying as part of a semester-long elective that addresses topical issues in the environmental and agricultural fields. The trip aligned with the high school sustainability curriculum, which was funded by the Byram Hills Education Foundation.
“It’s pretty cool to know that this is happening so close to us,” said senior John Febbo, who was among the students who pledged to be more attentive to finding out where the food he eats comes from.
For most of the seven juniors and seniors on the trip, the visit to a working farm was a first.
They toured Cabbage Hill’s greenhouse, which houses an aquaponics system for symbiotic production of Tilapia fish and a wide range of vegetables. The students also saw the farm’s pig and chicken stock, and learned, from greenhouse manager Barney Sponenberg, about other sustainable farming practices used at Cabbage Hill.
Students then visited Table Local Market in Bedford Hills, which serves food produced at Cabbage Hill and other local farms that practice sustainable methods.
“It was a really good experience for the students to be focused consumers and see how things work in a sustainable model from production to consumption,” said Science Chairperson Debra Cayea, who teaches the class.
While analyzing food labels and enjoying food that some declared was the best they had “ever tasted,” the students listened to Table co-owner Peter Menzies speak about the rewards and challenges of working in the sustainable farming movement and its place in today’s economy.
“It was an excellent experience,” said Ms. Cayea. “To meet some of the people involved in the slow food movement and to see how local this movement can be, was a real eye opener for the students.”