Wisconsin Rapids schools get largest grant from Fruit and Veggie Program

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The fresh fruit and vegetable program is providing grants to 184 Wisconsin schools this year. The program aims to provide students with a daily nutritious snack and a chance to sample fruits and vegetables they may not try otherwise.

In total ten schools in the area received grants from the fresh fruit and vegetable program, but no school district benefitted more than the Wisconsin Rapids school district, with over $45,000 in grants given to three schools.

One of those schools is Mead Elementary Charter School.
Students in every grade are provided a fresh snack daily.
Besides the obvious nutritional benefit short term, long term the program can create better eating habits, allow students to be educated about fruits and vegetables they don't know about, and come closer together while enjoying their snacks as a group.

Lizzie Severson is the Wisconsin Rapids School District food director: "It really provides an opportunity for the students to get a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables that they might not otherwise have access to," she says. "It gets them an opportunity to also try new fruits or vegetables that they might have not tried before, and then they get excited about it and tell their parents about it and you know potentially look for those things in the store to have those at home"

The students are fans of it too.

It'll make us have our brains working more," says Olivia, a young student. "(It will) have them grow more, and help us learn"

Outside the box foods the kids have had a chance to try include starfruit, raw sweet potato and jicama.