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"We do spot audits of the 16 vendors to make sure they follow environmentally responsible practices." Also through his nonprofit, Nischan runs a cooking and gardening seminar at Westport's Staples High School and the new Green Wave Farm-to-College program, which provides healthy cuisine made with locally grown produce to Vassar College students.
"Kids need to understand that food doesn't just come from the grocery store," he stresses. "Where you buy your food has a profound effect on your own and the Earth's health. If you choose an industrially produced ham, for instance, you are supporting environmental degradation in the Carolinas. Instead, you could buy a ham from Heritage Foods and support the beautiful New York and Connecticut countryside."
At their home in Fairfield, the five Nischan children learn the benefits of local produce. They help their mother, Lori, tend the family's 9,000-square-foot kitchen garden. "I think some of them enjoy showing off to their friends how they can just go into the garden and pick their own food," Nischan says. It seems like they're following in their father's footsteps.