Initial evaluation of a student-run fruit and vegetable business in urban high schools

Nicholas I. Sikic, Nancy Erbstein, Kearnan Welch, Ethan Grundberg, Elizabeth Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Introduction. This study examined the acceptability and feasibility of Fresh Producers, a student-run fruit and vegetable distribution program at three urban high schools located in low-income neighborhoods, and its potential impact on the nutrition and professional development of participating students. Methods. Thirteen focus groups conducted with 72 students explored the program's impact on their dietary habits and professional skill development, and discussed program challenges. Responses were coded for common themes by multiple investigators. Results. Participants reported increased fruit and vegetable consumption, and improved interpersonal, team-building, and organizational skills. Challenges included integration into the school schedule and environment and limited faculty support for business activities. Conclusion. This program is acceptable and feasible for secondary school students in a variety of school settings. Students reported positive changes in professional skills and nutrition. Training and support for students and faculty, including strategies to improve program integration into the school context, could increase participation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1590-1599
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Community health
  • Nutrition
  • School health
  • Youth engagement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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