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Published by: YourMessageMedia on Feb 10, 2009
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10 Steps to Setting Up a School Fruit and Vegetable Stand 
How to increase access to fresh fruitsand vegetables in small rural communitiesin the Central Valley 
Numerous studies show that children
who eat nourishing, well-balanced meals and healthysnacks, and get plenty o vigorous exercise have more energy, are more alert, and perormbetter in school. Nutritionists, health care workers, school ood services directors and anincreasing number o parents across Caliornia now encourage inclusion o resh ruits andvegetables with all amily meals and snacks. This is nearly impossible, however, unless amilieshave easy access to resh produce they can aord.The goal to “eat healthy” is especially challenging in small, rural communities in the CentralValley, which cannot support ull-scale grocery markets or the kind o Farmers Markets ound inlarger communities. Most commonly ound in small communities are one or two “Mom andPop” markets oering a limited choice o resh ruits and vegetables (onions, peppers, chilies,lime/lemons, oranges and perhaps bananas), at prices well above those charged in largermarkets. To nd a wider variety o produce at more aordable prices, residents have to drive –i they can – to larger communities with supermarkets or big box stores.
Healthy Foods,Healthy Communities 
Success in Pixley 
The community o Pixley (population 2,589 Census 2000) in Tulare County lacked a large marketselling resh ruits and vegetables. But what Pixley has – as does nearly every community omore than a thousand residents – is a local school (or school district) with concerned parents,teachers and school administrators, and local ocials who can help promote the health andwell-being o community residents. And as a center or community services and events, schoolsites already provide a sae, structured environment and amiliar ocal point or the community.Today at Pixley school, aordable ruits and vegetables are made available to amilies or purchaseat the weekly School Fruit and Vegetable Stand. This exciting pilot project has proven to bebenecial to the students, the community and the school. The students involved in bagging,and the parents involved in selling the produce, learn multiple skills relevant to uture employment;unds are earned or ater school activities; the relationship between community and school isenhanced, and children, their amilies and community members are consuming more reshruits and vegetables.With the right preparation, schools in small communities throughout the Central Valley canserve as similar sites or resh ruit and vegetables stands. We oer the ollowing booklet as aguide or schools and related organizations considering establishment o a school-based o aFruit and Vegetable Stand in their community. Working together, every community can improveaccess to healthy, aordable ood or ourselves and our children.

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