A Basket Full of Fresh Resources

The Produce Lady Program

With a grant from the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission, the Plants for Human Health Institute communications team has developed a set of materials that consists of a “Fresh and Tasty from the Market – Healthy Eating Guide,” a children’s resources CD that includes videos and activities, recipe cards, signage for farmers markets and a resource guide that lists all of The Produce Lady program resources, including ideas on how to use them as well as how to order quantities of the resources. The Produce Lady program includes a website (www.theproducelady.org), a monthly e-newsletter, videos and a blog. The program provides tips to help farmers sell more fresh produce and encourages consumers to eat more fruits and vegetables by showing them how to select, prepare, store and preserve locally-grown foods.

The Plants for Human Health Institute has sent educational materials to county Cooperative Extension centers for distribution to farmers markets, growers and other clientele this spring. For more information about the resources, view the webinar, A Resource Guide for The Produce Lady Materials.

The N.C. Strawberry Project

The N.C. Strawberry Project is a joint effort between the research and extension teams at the Plants for Human Health Institute. Project partners have packaged together materials including an N.C. strawberry stat sheet, project fact sheet and recipe cards that feature creations from the chefs and students at Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte. A survey will go out this spring to strawberry farmers with you-pick operations to help identify berry characteristics that consumers find most desirable.

The project is in full swing during strawberry season with sensory analysis panels under way, taste tests at the State Farmers Market in Raleigh on May 5 and the Matthews Tailgate Market on May 14. Representatives will also be hosting a booth, along with The Produce Lady, at the Got to Be N.C. food festival in Raleigh May 20 through 22. The project is also conducting on-farm surveys and a media campaign. Listen for information about the project on public radio stations statewide, read about us in local papers and websites and watch for us on local television. We will be sending all N.C. Cooperative Extension centers information cards with strawberry recipes created by Chef Mark Allison of Johnson & Wales University to distribute to clientele.

The N.C. Strawberry Project is supported by the Golden LEAF Foundation.