Editor’s note: This story and photo were submitted about activity prior to the pandemic.
Urbana FFA used a grant received last fall through the Ohio FFA Foundation and Ohio Department of Agriculture to purchase vertical hydroponic systems. Teacher Zachrich’s class was educated on growing produce with the hydroponics and developed a plan to offer a free salad to all students and staff over the winter months completely funded by the grant. Students developed surveys to ask their classmates which toppings and dressings were most desirable.
With the survey results, students from Teacher Trenor’s class worked on developing salad options that would provide a balanced meal by looking at nutrient content and sources. Students in Teacher Wilhelm’s class created nutrition labels from the popular salad choices from the surveys to display in the cafeteria so students and staff could see the nutrition content when making their salads.
The project was successful thanks to the support of all the teachers involved in the project as well as high school kitchen staff. Students thoroughly enjoyed the salad bar and some have taken a liking to salads now that they have explored different toppings and types of leaf lettuces.
Students and staff also shared their amazement on how many calories can be in one packet of dressing. Many would use two packets and have changed to one. Students working on the project developed a sense of pride to be able to not only produce the lettuce on site at UHS but also to provide a free healthy and delicious meal!
Submitted by Urbana FFA.