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Almost $112K in Federal Fruit, Vegetable Funding Coming to Allentown Schools | WDIY Local News

Nick Fewings

New federal money is coming to Allentown to help provide fresh fruit and vegetables to elementary students.

State Rep. Josh Siegel announced Thursday that $111,960 has been awarded to three Allentown schools from the federal Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program.

According to a release from Siegel’s office, $48,600 will go to Central Elementary School, $41,760 was earmarked for Sheridan Elementary School, and $21,600 was awarded to Roberto Clemente Elementary Charter School.

Through the federal program, the schools will be reimbursed for the cost of making fresh fruits and vegetables available to students during the school day.

The items must be provided separately from the lunch or breakfast meals in one or more areas of the school.

“Introducing healthy and nutritional habits to our students when they are young and in school is vital in helping them maintain that practice throughout the entirety of their lives,” Siegel said in the release.

“This program does exactly that and makes sure our students have access to healthy food; furthermore, they don’t have to worry about if they have money to afford it.”

The FFVP seeks to introduce children at high-risk elementary schools to fresh fruits and vegetables. It prioritizes schools with the highest percentage of children eligible for free and reduced-price meals, to give children from low-income families more opportunities to regularly consume this produce.

The program also aims to introduce kids to new and different varieties, increase acceptance and consumption of fresh, unprocessed produce, and promote nutritional education.

Schools must participate in the National School Lunch Program to be eligible for FFVP.

(Original air-date: 8/18/23)

Sarit "Siri" Laschinsky was WDIY's News and Public Affairs Director until 2023.
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