Grants Provide Free Fruit, Veggies, Snacks for Newport Students

Newport students will receive fresh fruits, vegetables, and snacks through two federal programs.

The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, funded through a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), provides all children in participating schools with a variety of fresh produce throughout the school day.

"The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program is an effective and creative way of introducing fresh fruits and vegetables as healthy snack options," said Newport Food Service Director Lisa Rizzo. 

"Fruits and vegetables are distributed in the classroom, where there is opportunity for students to receive nutrition education. When students receive the item, a fast fact or other information related to the produce is attached."

One of the program's goals is for students to be introduced to a variety of fruits and vegetables that they haven't seen or tasted, including unique items such as ugli, pummelo dragon, samphire and purple sweet potato.

Other goals of the program include:

  • Creating healthier school environments by providing healthier food choices
  • Expanding the variety of fruits and vegetables children experience
  • Increasing children's fruit and vegetable consumption
  • Making a difference in children's diets to impact their present and future health

Students enrolled in Newport's recently announced all-day preschool will also receive free snacks through the district's participation in the USDA Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) administered by the Kentucky Department of Education.

Newport currently participates in the CACFP by providing an afterschool "super" snack to students in all three of the district's schools.

-Staff report