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Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014

Light Rain, 64 °F

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A sample of a weekly share

A sample of a weekly share

Photographer: Ryanne Gallagher

CSA-fabulous-veggie-dress-200

: Ryanne Gallagher did outreach to offices across the Athens campus in this veggie-themed dress.

Photographer: Heidi Anderson

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WellWorks, local farms bring fresh produce to OHIO


This summer, Shade River Farms of Athens will be delivering local, organic vegetables directly to Ohio University’s Athens campus as part of a WellWorks program intended to educate the campus community about sustainability through food. This effort is being accomplished through a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

“CSA’s are an excellent way to make investments in local agricultural economies and in our own personal health and well-being,” explained Annie Laurie Cadmus, director of sustainability at Ohio University. “Individuals purchase a single or half share of the summer harvest and then, in return, are provided with weekly produce.” 

In 2011, the College of Health Sciences and Professions successfully collaborated with Shade River's CSA project and its success allowed WellWorks to extend the program to the entire campus community. 

Heidi Anderson, special event and education coordinator for WellWorks, participated in last year’s CSA. 

“It was like Christmas every week!” said Anderson. “This program provided a convenient way to increase the quantity, quality, and variety of vegetables in the diet of adventurous participants who took on the challenge.”

However, some participants expressed difficulty in finding recipes, preparing and storing the vegetables before they expired.

WellWorks has developed a plan meant to resolve this issue by providing an online resource of recipes, cooking techniques, nutrition information and more. This online resource will be managed by WellWorks’ nutrition graduate assistant, Ryanne Gallagher.

“The website will also be a place where participants can ask questions, to which I or another CSA participant will respond," she said.

Gallagher, a food and nutrition graduate student pursuing her licensure as a registered dietitian at the Cleveland Clinic this fall, noted that “a large benefit of supporting local agriculture is the enhanced sense of community. By having a place where participants can ask questions, share ideas, help and learn from one another, this benefit can be achieved by all.”

CSA members will receive 20 weeks of vegetables along with the aforementioned online resources to help them get the most out of their CSA. For more information about this program, please contact Ryanne Gallagher at shaderivercsa@hotmail.com.