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Integrating Urban Agriculture and Nutrition Promotion to Increase Consumption of Fruits and Vegetables: A Focus on Worcester, Massachusetts

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Principal Investigator/Project Leader: 
Co-Principal Investigator/Co-Project Leader: 
Sponsoring Unit(s): 
Department of Project: 
Department of Nutrition
Project Description: 

Low fruit and vegetable intake is recognized as a significant risk factor for poor health outcomes including an increased risk of overweight and obesity and subsequent co-morbidities such as hypertension, diabetes and heart disease. Increasing fruit and vegetable intake serves as a protective factor against obesity and chronic disease. The overall goal of this project is to increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables in a target community by integrating expertise in Agriculture, Food Access, and Nutrition Education programming. A collaboration of faculty and staff in nutrition, agricultural sciences and Extension at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, will partner with community organizations, produce marketers and the local middle school. Investigators will establish baselines for on fruit and vegetable consumption as well as the diversity and amount of fruits and vegetables easily available within the community. Interventions will be conducted to increase the availability and the consumption of fruits and vegetables. A rigorous evaluation will be implemented to assess the success of the interventions.

Topics: 
Nutrition topics: 
Food Access