Gardening and cooking lessons hit the road in new Farm Explorer

The outside wrap on Greener Partner's Farm Explorer. The mobile gardening and cooking truck launches in early April. | Photo from Greener PartnersA new kind of food truck is rolling into town. One that isn’t just serving meals, but that allows diners to harvest and cook their food too. In April, Greener Partners, a five-county, Greater Philadelphia-based nonprofit that connects communities through food, farms and education, is launching their Farm Explorer – a 24-foot trailer that holds living vegetable beds and a community kitchen all hauled by a biodiesel Ford F-150 truck.

“The raised beds on Farm Explorer will mimic the (seasonally changing) raised beds in the fields of Hillside Farm, creating the most authentic farm experience we can,” says Helen Nadel, education specialist for Greener Partners. “Allowing children to have the experience of pulling food from the dirt and tasting how delicious it is can be a real ‘Aha!’ moment.”

Farm Explorer was inspired by research that found a curriculum combining gardening and nutrition education improves student attitudes and preferences for fruits and vegetables. Greener Partners hopes to connect children and families to their food through physical, sensorial and practical experiences. The end goal is to increase general health, reduce obesity rates and reconnect people with the pleasures of real food.

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