Omega Helps Connect the Dots Between Food, the Environment & Health

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Hudson Valley Leader in Sustainable Education Announces Summer Lineup of Programs & Demonstrates Commitment to Leading by Example

The goal is for people to leave Omega feeling more informed and ready to take initiative towards a sustainable future in their own communities

Omega Institute, home of the award-winning Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL) and long-time environmental steward, today announced a lineup of programs aimed at helping people transform their lives and communities toward greater personal and environmental health. Located in the heart of New York’s Hudson Valley, Omega’s 250+ acre campus offers guests an immersive experience, as it combines teaching and advocacy with modeling what’s possible–from local farm-to-table food sourcing, to the use of alternative energy, to water conservation and waste reduction.

“The Hudson Valley is known for its natural beauty, agricultural resources, and supporting a growing sustainability movement that is redefining how we live in right relationship with the environment. Omega is committed to sourcing as much of our food from local vendors as possible and helping people connect the dots between food, the environment and health,” said Robert “Skip” Backus, chief executive officer at Omega. “The goal is for people to leave Omega feeling more informed and ready to take initiative towards a sustainable future in their own communities,” concluded Backus.

Agriculture is a driving force behind the Hudson Valley’s economy—more than 5,000 largely family-owned and operated local farms have a gross economic impact of $810 million. At Omega, purchasing food grown in the Hudson Valley and reducing food waste are two important initiatives.

With more than 23,000 visitors annually, Omega serves approximately 700 mostly vegetarian meals, 3 times a day in its Dining Hall, and sources food from farms and vendors across the region. Extra food never goes to waste, as Omega sends meals to Dutchess Outreach’s Lunch Box in Poughkeepsie, New York, and composts food scraps at MacEnroe Organic Farm in Millerton, New York.

Omega is holding a variety of workshops that offer hands-on approaches to food preparation, healthy eating, permaculture and growing food. A full list of opportunities is available online and a sampling is listed below:

All of Omega’s sustainable education and environmental outreach fall under the umbrella of the Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL). Founded in 2009, the OCSL, a state-of-the-art water reclamation facility and environmental education center, originated as the first green building in America to achieve both LEED® Platinum and Living Building Challenge™ certification—the highest standards currently available in sustainable architecture. More than just a building, the OCSL has evolved into an environmental leader, offering programs that teach the regenerative environmental practices modeled by the building.

Omega’s commitment to sustainability also includes recycling, composting, and conservation, powering 100% of campus electricity through the purchase of wind and solar power, supporting sustainable agriculture and local business, and reducing greenhouse gases through shuttle services, ride sharing, and LiveNeutral™ (a program to offset carbon emissions).

For more information visit, and follow Omega on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Google+.

About Omega Institute for Holistic Studies
Founded in 1977, Omega Institute for Holistic Studies is the nation’s most trusted source for wellness and personal growth. As a nonprofit organization, Omega offers diverse and innovative educational experiences that inspire an integrated approach to personal and social change. Located on 250 acres in the beautiful Hudson Valley, Omega welcomes more than 23,000 people to its workshops, conferences, and retreats in Rhinebeck, New York, and at exceptional locations around the world.
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Chrissa Pullicino
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