Open wide! Like really, REALLY wide.

Lori05871Open wide! Like really, REALLY wide.

It’s safe to say UMass students are overachievers. Staff and students there celebrate the start of every school year by making a record-breaking amount of food, complete with certification from the Guinness World Records. This year was no different:

About 500 students and staff at the Amherst campus on Monday sliced, diced, pitted and peeled 150 varieties of fruit to create a salad weighing more than 15,000 pounds. The salad was mixed in a 15-foot diameter swimming pool.

It included 20 varieties of apples weighing more than 3,600 pounds; 19 varieties of melon weighing more than 2,500 pounds; peaches, bananas, oranges, and berries as well as more exotic fruits including quince, passion fruit, and rambutan.

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Was it organic? Who would want to eat salad out of a swimming pool? WHAT IS RAMBUTAN? The winds of academia blow a single tumbleweed past as we silently await the answer.

(Aha: UMass staffer Ken Toong says half the fruit was local, and it will all get eaten, whether in the dining hall or donated to the Amherst Survival Center.) I still want to make sure nobody’s swimming trunks are mixed up in the salad, though. Yuck.

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