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Villanova U. Getting Students To Buy Farm Shares For Healthier Eating

VILLANOVA, Pa. (CBS) - Many college students dread the "freshman fifteen" -- those extra 15 pounds that many students acquire during their first year at college -- but a new program at Villanova University aims to cut the fat by offering some farm-fresh fruits and greens.

Officials at the university say it started as a class project for some environmental science students, and sprouted.

"Students can buy a share from local farmers, and farmers will deliver the vegetables or the fruit right here to our convenience store on campus," explains Tim Dietzler, director of dining services at Villanova.

He says they're getting the produce from the Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative.

Starting this fall, students, faculty, and staff can order a full ($364) or half ($221) share of vegetables and get up to a dozen pieces each week for three months.

"There's also a flower share or a fruit share," Dietzler says.  "For the flower share, each week a large bouquet of fresh wildflowers will be delivered, and they will stay fresh for 7-10 days in your home."

It's part of a community-supported agriculture ("CSA") program that helps keep local farms and food growing strong -- and now gives college students a break from the cheesesteak.

Reported by Ian Bush, KYW Newsradio 1060

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