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"Grow on the Go" promotes healthy eating

Posted at 7:43 AM, Jun 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-08 07:37:08-04

"Grow on the Go" is a program in Niagara Falls promoting healthy eating. The program uses abandoned shopping carts and turns them into mobile gardens.

"We got the idea about a year ago from a program that started in Oregon," said Justine Hays Lead Nutritionist with Eat Smart New York  through Cornell Cooperative Extension. "The carts are helping our immediate community members, everyone that kind of lives in walking distance of the library and also some of our community agencies. It really increases that access to fresh fruits and vegetables."

The Cornell Cooperative Extension found abandoned carts in the city and called their respective stores for permission to use them for the gardens. "Grow on the Go" launches last month and they were able to collect nearly 20 carts to garden in. 

The Niagara Falls Public Library is helping the initiative in a big way. They connected people with carts and hosted a "Cart Clinic."

"I've seen a few of our gardens walking around and people are telling me that their kale is getting bigger and they're excited to start harvesting," said Joanna Bataglia a librarian. 

"The cart clinic is actually like a gardening and nutrition workshop so people can bring their carts back if they were part of the original planting party with us," said Hays. 

The clinics are open to anyone free of charge. Interest in the program for next year has already prompted a waiting list. 

Hays says in a few weeks the program will likely expand to Lackawanna.