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Urban farm to bring better nutrition to more students

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Written by: Alexa Stone
School cafeteria
One in five students in Orange County (Florida) Public Schools is food insecure.

Orlando, Florida, is about to experience a better food future. An urban farm, the 4Roots Farm Campus, will bring the “four roots” of  education, health, economic development, and sustainability to a district now under construction near downtown.

The 4Roots Foundation, a sustainable agriculture initiative of 4 Rivers Restaurants, is collaborating with the Plant Science & Agricultural Technology Program of Valencia College. Their work will be a proving ground for solutions to global needs for feeding hungry children, avoiding diet-related illnesses, limiting the use of chemical pesticides, and wasting food. In the U.S., 30% of the food supply is wasted, even as 41 million Americans are “food insecure” — lacking consistent access to food![1]

The 4Roots Farm Campus will yield local food to nourish local children. It will become a community crossroads for agricultural education and innovation. Local farmers and agriculture students will have an outdoor laboratory for technical innovation. It’s envisioned as a $30 million project that will be completed in about five years.[2]

News and Notes items accompany the longer articles found in ecoPreserve’s newsletter, Sharing Sustainability. Several issues of the newsletter can be previewed here.