Living Simply and With the Earth
Our core values of social and environmental responsibility inform every decision we make at Eden Village. Below are a few examples of the great care we take in choosing the products we use in our community.
- Stainless Steel and 100% Recycled Tableware
- Local and Sustainable Milk, Eggs, and Ice Cream
- Free-Roaming, Ethically Raised Chicken
- Local, Organic Produce
- Environmentally Conscious and Safe Cleaning Products
- Safe and Effective Natural Sunscreen and Bug Spray
- Socially-Conscious Sporting Goods
- 100% Organic Cotton T-Shirts and Apparel
- 100% Recycled Paper Goods
- Compostable Trash Bags and Paper Dining Goods
- Energy-Efficient Technology
- Solar Panels, Farm, Greenhouse, Hundreds of Small Choices…
Stainless Steel and 100% Recycled Tableware
We love amazing food – which means also thinking about what we use to consume it! The everyday plates, bowls, and mugs we use in our dining hall are stainless steel and enamelware stainless steel so that we don’t worry about leeching or contamination. The cups we use for water and other cold beverages are made by Preserve and are 100% recycled #5 plastic. Known for their recycled toothbrushes, Preserve makes a line of tableware that is completely recycled and both BPA- and melamine-free. For those places our stainless steel plates can’t go, we use Preserve’s lightweight, dishwasher safe On-The-Go tableware.
Local and Sustainable Milk, Eggs, and Ice Cream
As farmers, we know how important and delightful it is to know where your food comes from and who produced it. This region produces delicious food, and we love supporting our neighbors and fellow local farmers. Whenever we can, we choose high-quality local products for our kitchen. Our milk comes from a non-profit cooperative of dairy farmers who practice sustainable agriculture in the Hudson Valley, thus preserving 5,000 acres of open land. Hudson Valley Fresh milk farmers are committed to producing and selling locally. All milk comes from within 20 miles of the processing plant and is never delivered beyond the local tri-state area.
Our ice cream comes from Adirondack Creamery in New York, less than an hour from Eden Village. Adirondack uses milk only from local, hormone-free cows with the finest all-natural ingredients and no artificial additives. It is a hit with our campers!
We supplement the eggs from our two flocks of chickens with eggs from Giving Nature Organic Foods, a local family farm deeply committed to organic, sustainable agriculture.
Free-roaming, ethically raised Chicken
We’re lucky to have a formed a special partnership with Grow and Behold Foods, who provides us with their delicious line of Sara’s Spring Chicken. Unlike organic “free-range” or “free-roaming” chickens (which have access to the outdoors, but spend most of their lives inside), these chickens live outdoors in moveable pens and are moved out onto fresh pasture each day.
Raised about an hour’s drive from camp, they eat grass, fresh forage, and a small amount of GMO-free and soy-free feed. This means the healthiest and tastiest Kosher chicken for our campers and staff. We’re grateful for the opportunity to work with a new company whose mission is so closely aligned with the values our camp teaches. Grow and Behold graciously subsidized a summer’s worth of chicken for our campers.
Local, Organic Produce
In addition to our farm’s daily supply of amazing fresh food, we are committed to keeping our fresh food sources as local as possible. We were fortunate to be able to purchase ten shares of the Common Ground Farm’s CSA (community-supported agriculture) in Beacon, New York, less than 15 miles from camp. Common Ground is an educational and socially engaged farm, committed to making fresh, organic produce available to everyone. Each week, the farmers of Common Ground take their harvest into low income neighborhoods and process payments with their food stamp machine, ensuring that high-quality, local, organic produce is available to everyone.
Environmentally conscious and safe cleaning products
At camp, we keep harsh chemicals out of our cleaning strategy while effectively addressing dirt, germs, and grime. Using cleaning products from Ecologic Solutions and soap from Organic & Nature, we keep camp clean with products that are toxic-free, environmentally safe, and biodegradable. These two companies aim to be “green” from the roots up, unlike many conventional companies that merely have “green” lines of products.
Safe and effective natural sunscreen and bug spray
Like most camps, we make sure to always have sunscreen and bug spray on hand to protect our campers. Unlike most camps, we make sure the products we offer are safe for both our bodies and the environment. We’re proud to provide paraben-free Kiss My Face sunscreen, with no unnecessary chemicals or animal testing. We also have natural and effective Buzz Away Extreme bug spray, which provides safe and natural protection for mosquitoes, ticks, and other bugs.
Socially conscious sporting goods
Our commitment to ethical purchasing extends to all of our programs. Whenever possible, we purchase products that we know were made in an ethical and socially responsible way. We are proud to have the full line of sporting goods from Fair Trade Sports, the world’s first line of certified green and Fair Trade sporting goods. When throwing a football, passing a soccer ball, tossing a frisbee, or shooting a basketball, our campers are reminded of the ethical decisions we can make every day to create a more just world.
100% Organic Cotton T-Shirts and Apparel
All of our t-shirts, sweatshirts, and hats are made from 100% Organic Cotton supplied by Anvil Knitwear. In addition, they are all Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certified, which tests against one of the most stringent product safety standards in the world, to ensure that products are free of harmful levels of chemicals and substances.
100% Recycled Paper Goods
Throughout our facility, from paper towels to toilet paper to napkins to our copy paper, folders, and envelopes, we use only 100% recycled paper. We take great care to minimize our use of paper whenever possible. These efforts involve strategic decisions designed to discourage excessive paper use. One such example is our decision to purchase a smaller, energy-efficient photo copier and printer. Designed for medium-size jobs and printing at somewhat slower speeds, it encourages smaller copying jobs and fewer copies. It’s an example of a choice to pick a product that reflects not simply what is possible, but what is responsible and prudent for our world.
Compostable trash bags and paper dining goods
In the rare instance that we do use disposable goods, we take great care to ensure we use products that minimize our waste. To that end, not only are all paper plates and bowls and disposable forks, knives, spoons, and cups compostable and biodegradable, but also so are all of our trash bags.
We take great efforts to keep our campers unplugged all summer; meanwhile, our modern office requires lots of technology. Whenever possible, we use technology with the highest environmental standards — considering energy consumption, hazardous or non-renewable product inputs, and end-of-life hazards.
Our computers all achieve the EPEAT Gold rating, the highest environmental standard for computers, judged on 23 criteria. One of our laptops is paneled in bamboo, which has been a great launch pad for discussions about renewable building materials!
Our primary camp car is a Toyota Prius hybrid and we purchased a Ford diesel truck in order to convert it later this year to be powered by waste veggie oil.
Solar Panels, Farm, Greenhouse, hundreds of small choices…
We get to use energy straight from the sun! Thanks to grants from the Jewish Greening Fellowship and New York State, there is now a 2.8kW, grid-connected Photovoltaic system on the office roof overlooking the farm. Our new cedar greenhouse, also a generous donation, will allow us to start seeding early in the Spring and increase food production. Countless smaller purchases, like our promotional banner made of bamboo to name just one, take social and environmental responsibility into account, and tie into the larger vision of living harmoniously with our earth. We love reducing, reusing, recycling, and most of all rethinking!
If there is a product you want to know more about or if you have an awesome suggestion, please let us know. We are always excited to share our process with you and add more intention to our choices.
In our efforts to learn more about the world around us, we’ve included a background image of one of the plant species native to our campgrounds. On this page you can find the: