New food co-op to hold first dinner of semester

Allegheny’s new food co-op program, Allegheny Must Not Dine Alone, will host its first dinner of the semester next Friday, Feb. 1, in Carr Hall. This will be the program’s fourth dinner.

Brittany Iafrate, ’14, a student from the junior seminar which created the co-op last semester, said that by the end of the year she hopes the co-op will be self-sustainable. For each dinner, co-op participants cycle through various responsibilities. Two head chefs, two sous chefs, two shoppers and five clean-up positions are required for each meal.

From among the six students who were pivotal in formulating the co-op project, only two are still on campus. The other four are currently studying abroad.

“As of now, there aren’t enough people involved for everyone to do each job only once,” said Iafrate.

Iafrate said she hopes more people will become involved and that Allegheny’s co-op will grow in prominence.

She said that last year, her class visited Oberlin College in Oberlin, Oh., and toured their co-op facilities. At Oberlin, students can live as well as eat at the co-op.

“At Oberlin, students involved in the co-op eat three meals a day,” Iafrate said. “But they started their program like 60 years ago.”

Junior Lynette Kehoe, who attended all three dinners last semester, said she enjoys the co-op’s community-building aspect.

“It brings together a group of people that wouldn’t normally be eating together,” said Kehoe.

Aman Biswas, ’13, agreed, saying that meeting new people is just as appealing as the opportunity the co-op provides students to eat healthy food at a low cost.

“Usually, you go to eat dinner with someone you know. But the co-op provides an opportunity to meet someone new,” said Biswas.

Biswas said he believes the co-op has a lot of potential to succeed at Allegheny as long as the students involved stay motivated.

“What they’re doing is great. People need to be dedicated, especially in the beginning, when there is a lot of trial and error involved,” he said. “They should stick to their founding mission…promoting awareness of where different foods come from.”