Spotlight: the best food societies at Durham University

Durham University has over 200 societies on the Student Union website and hundreds more due to each college having its own societies. One thing that everyone can agree on is that a sign of a good society no matter the interest is that free food is on offer. One interesting niche of societies is dedicated to just that. Food societies allow people to meet others in a relaxed, social environment dedicated to different foods. In this deep dive, I will look at all the food societies in Durham with active social media pages this year (sorry chocolate soc, canape soc and food appreciation soc). I have judged the societies using the criteria of value for money, socials and quality of social media pages. You can find links to the Instagram pages of each society in their titles.

Durham University Curry Club

Durham University Curry Club is one of the most social food societies and according to the SU website, they visit local South Asian restaurants every fortnight. Their social media pages show pictures of busy socials and the first social this year hosted at Alishaan had 120 people attend. After the social, members went to Loft. This society is perfect for those who love to have a pint and a meal with friends and then go clubbing afterwards. Everyone is welcome at Durham University Curry Club unless, as the society jokes, you order a chicken korma. Although the Curry Club socials mostly involve going to a local restaurant, members can also participate in the society by ordering stash. The society has amassed quite an impressive following given that almost 100 people are willing to pay £34 quarter zips with the logo on them. The £2 yearly membership is good value for money due to the frequent socials that the society hosts. However, like all societies there can always be an improvement and one thing I would love to see is an engagement with the cultural and historic traditions of curry from different regions on their Instagram.


Durham University Egg Society

Next up we have Egg Society which is more relaxed than the curry club. Made up of people who love eggs, the society’s Instagram page showcases the best egg creations from fellow students and the eggsec. In particular, the twelve days of eggmas last year displayed eggselent cooking skills and I hope that this feature of the society returns this year. Although the best part of the society is the Instagram page, in Easter term of last year they hosted a chicken vs egg social where members were encouraged to dress up as one or the other. At £1, the society is affordable but begs the question of what the budget of membership goes towards at all. I would also love to see more socials this year.


Durham University Hummus Society

Arguably the most famous food society and perhaps even the most famous society at Durham is dedicated to hummus. This society was made famous by Jack Edwards who was at one point part of the exec. The Hummus Society Facebook page dates back to 2018 demonstrating its long heritage at the university. The society has been active throughout its existence but this year there are big plans for the society as they are planning socials, the return of Durham hummus festival, stash, online content and sponsorships! These are bold ambitions for a society but I strangely have belief in the exec. They have already hosted their first social this year which sold out and featured a chill meet-up with drinks and free hummus for members. They also have a social tomorrow in collaboration with Durham Latin Social Dance Society which will involve dancing, challenges and free hummus and salsa. I love the collaboration with other societies and this brings a new dimension to social ideas for food societies. Points go to Durham Hummus society for their Instagram name ‘Durhummus’. Membership for the society however puts less of a smile on my face as it costs £3 a year which is one of the more expensive societies on the list. However, I think that the quality of the socials does make the society worth the cost.

 Durham Instant Noodle Society

Instant noodle society is dedicated to eating noodles and meeting new people. The society has a welcoming Instagram page which posts about all their socials. The society is very active and has already hosted four events this year. Hosting a range of socials and sessions where members get to try different noodles, the society has a creative approach to introducing people to the food. I particularly love the noodle of the week and the session ratings which give the society a very interactive feel. This weekend, the society collaborated with the KPOP society to host a 2x spicy noodle challenge with winners being posted to the social media page. The society welcomes anyone who wants to come along to bond over instant noodles which are a prominent part of Asian culture and costs £3 a year in exchange for reduced social costs for members. I would love to see more of an exploration on their social media page about the history of instant noodles!

Durham University VegSoc

The Vegetarian and Vegan Society is slightly different from the other societies as it is dedicated to a much larger group of foods than the other societies of this article. With 561 followers on Instagram, this society has the most engagement of any food society in Durham. They aim to introduce and promote plant-based food to everyone including those who eat meat. I think that it is an important message that the society does not exclude people who do eat meat as it encourages people to limit their intake of animal products. I love the Instagram account which is bright and colourful and reflects the nature of the food they are promoting. The society has had two socials this year so far, and with the wide range of food to choose from the social ideas are endless. The most recent social was a meal at Turtle Bay which encouraged members to meet and get to know each other. A new social has just been announced that is Noah’s ark themed and is taking place on the 16th of November. It involves dressing up as an animal and being paired with a partner. Last year the society hosted talks and film nights and I hope that it brings back these different types of socials which are unique to the society. Membership costs £4 yearly or £5 for a lifetime membership. The lifetime membership is a wise investment in this case as it will save you a lot of money in the long run.


Overall, at Durham there is a food society for everyone. Whether looking for a more social society accompanied by drinks, a society that shares pictures of food creations or one that holds events and talks it is possible to find all of these. If there is a food that is not represented in this list but that you have a passion for there is also the opportunity to create your own society!


Image credits: Fauxels on Pexels

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