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Thursday, September 24, 2009

UW-L serves students regional produce in support of area farmers

From an article by K.J. Lang in the La Crosse Tribune:

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse students are showing support for local family farms - with their stomachs.

Students at lunch Wednesday bit into Honey-crisp apples from La Crescent, Minn. They sipped creamy soup made with buttercup squash from Elk River, Minn., and topped their salad with grape tomatoes from Hillview Greenhouse Life Center, just a few blocks from campus.

Chartwells, the campus food service, served up the locally grown produce this week as part of a promotion, "It Takes You - Eat Local." The program was developed to support farmers who grow produce within a 150-mile radius of the campus, said Tom Dockham, resident district manager for Chartwells.

The program allows students to sample produce that can be sun ripened for more nutritional value and better taste, said Randy Hanson, Chartwells executive chef.

UW-L senior Craig Wagner said he usually isn't much of an apple cider drinker, but after tasting some from Lake City, Minn., his response was, "I wouldn't turn it down if they offered it again."

He was enthusiastic about the program behind the cider as well, saying, "I think it is important to support the local economy."

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