Eating locally-grown food can have a positive impact on the physical health of the local community as consumption moves away from processed foods like cookies, chips and fast food toward fresher, locally-grown alternatives. And yet, many families - including many in Chattanooga - subsist on low-cost, low-nutrition, industrial-based foods, both at home and in school.
Fifteen percent of all Hamilton County elementary students qualify as "obese",
and that number reaches 20% in seven schools that are now the target of an ambitious pilot program being launched by the Hamilton County Department of Education. HCDE is creating a healthier school nutrition environment by introducing more fresh
food into the schools’ cafeterias, classrooms and their extended communities.
The initiative, which is partially funded by Gaining Ground with matching funds from USDA, includes a training program to help cafeteria staff increase their knowledge about preparing and serving fresh fruits and vegetables, and a hands-on program to market the benefits of fresh foods to school parents through cooking lessons from a local chef.
In Hamilton County, the food movement is building behind the mobilization of students in seven elementary schools and their families. Nothing fuels a movement better than young people, and there’s no better place to start than the schools.
Eat Local Food
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