Wildcat Market Returns!

The UK Student Activities Board and the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment’s Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program partnered to bring the Wildcat Market back to campus! Sponsored by Student Government and UK Sustainability, this popular event brought FREE, local produce to students on campus!

Held on the South Lawn on Wednesday September 20th from 4:00 to 6:00 pm, the market was set up to start at four check in points. Students checked in with volunteers and the first 500 students received a free tote bag (above). After collecting their produce bag, students filed into two lines which held a variety of produce. Produce included apples, kale, cabbage, bok choy, beets, tomatoes, rainbow peppers, jalapeños, butternut squash, acorn squash, etc. The Wildcat Market had a huge turn out with close to 700 students attending the event within the first hour.

With the plentiful array of fruits and vegetables, students were abuzz with the opportunity to collect fresh produce at no cost. The system allowed students to collect up to $12 dollars in produce. With cards on each box of vegetable, students were able to tally how much they had “spent.” To finish, students went to the check out, where volunteers were available to check the produce was under the allotted $12 dollar budget.

Speaking with some of the students who attended the market, they expressed their delight in having an opportunity in receiving free produce to promote healthy eating. One student in particular stated, “I love that the Student Activities Board had this market set up. The location was convenient being so close to so many dorms on the south side of campus. An opportunity like this allows for students to choose from an abundance of fresh produce. It’s an important part of keeping our students healthy and a great way for campus to promote healthy habits!”

Students were also excited about the available recipe cards. Recipe cards were left at each produce box, with ingredients and instructions on how to prepare a dish centered around the main ingredient available. Some examples included; Crisp Cucumber Salad, Microwave Beet Chips, Beet Hash with Eggs, Crispy Kale Chips.

Another student commented, “I think we should have more farmers market type events all over campus! The amount of people that have shown up today prove that campus want more events like this. I would love to see a future in which UK holds a type of farmers market on a more regular basis.”

With the turnout of this years’ Wildcat Market, we are excited to see what other events the Students Activities Board and the College of Agriculture CSA program will bring to campus!

Katherine Johnson

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