Grant provides Hannibal students with fresh fruits and veggies

Students in the Hannibal Central School District will have access to fresh fruits and vegetables during the school day thanks to a federal grant aimed at encouraging nutritious snacking.

The program, administered by the New York State Department of Child Nutrition, will provide fresh fruits and vegetables twice per week to every student in pre-kindergarten through sixth grades. The healthy snacks will be distributed in the classrooms on Tuesdays and Thursdays each week, with a variety of fruits and vegetables served throughout the school year.

According to HCSD Food Service Director Nancy Younglove, this grant helps to make healthy snacking a reality for students who may otherwise not have access to such opportunities.  

“Hannibal is located in what is considered a ‘food desert,’ meaning the community does not have access to a variety of produce at an affordable price,” Younglove said. “This program will introduce children to fruits and vegetables that they may not get otherwise. It is our hope that students will discover an appetite for fruits and vegetables, which will set them on a path to a healthy lifestyle.”

In addition to the snack itself, the program offers an education component that will help students gain a better understanding about food, where it comes from and how it affects our everyday lives. 

“This program goes far beyond simply providing healthy snack options,” Younglove said. “It will ultimately create healthier school environments by providing healthier food choices while expanding the variety of fruits and vegetables children experience. We’re thrilled to launch this program and incredibly grateful for the opportunity.”