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A student at the Capitol Heights Academy in Oak Park tries a kumquat during the California Food Literacy Center’s after-school program.

More Information

  • More information HOLIDAY PRODUCE DRIVE

    What: Donate fresh fruit and vegetables for low-income students and families

    Where: Whole Foods Market, 4315 Arden Way, Sacramento

    When: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday

    Details:, (916) 873-2025

Give fresh produce to holiday drive

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013 - 12:01 pm

Lots of holiday drives gather toys or canned goods. The California Food Literacy Center hopes to collect something different — and perishable: Fresh fruit and vegetables.

On Sunday, the center will hold a fresh produce drive outside the Whole Foods Market, 4315 Arden Way, Sacramento. The goal: Collect enough fruit and vegetables to send home 25 pieces — five a day for five days — with every student at Capitol Heights Academy in Oak Park. That adds up to 3,375 pieces of produce.

“There are so many worthwhile causes right now providing gifts to kids, but we’re in a school where 91 percent of the kids are on free and reduced price lunches,” said Amber Stott, the center’s executive director. “When they go home for the holiday, we know they don’t have access to the fresh produce they’ve grown to love in our class. This will help them maintain healthy habits while also maintaining their enthusiasm for healthy food while they’re on break from school.”

Established in 2011, the center teaches low-income students about healthy eating. That includes at least five servings of fruit and vegetables a day.

During Sunday’s drive, patrons may buy produce at Whole Foods to donate or drop off other fruit and vegetables. All will be welcome.

If you think kids won’t eat these veggies or fruit, guess again. According to the center’s statistics, 70 percent of students request the foods they’ve tasted in class including broccoli, celery and oranges.

To learn more, click on

Call The Bee’s Debbie Arrington, (916) 321-1075. Follow her on Twitter @debarrington.

Read more articles by Debbie Arrington

About Appetizers

Chris Macias has served as The Sacramento Bee's Food & Wine writer since 2008. His writing adventures have ranged from the kitchen at French Laundry to helping pick 10 tons of zinfandel grapes with migrant farm workers in Lodi. Chris also judges regularly at food, wine and cocktail competitions around Northern California. His profile of a former gangbanger-turned-pastry-chef was included in Da Capo's "Best Food Writing 2012."

Read his Wine Buzz columns here
(916) 321-1253
Twitter: @chris_macias

Allen Pierleoni writes about casual lunchtime restaurants in The Sacramento Bee's weekly "Counter Culture" column. He covers a broad range of topics, including food, travel, books and authors. In addition to writing the weekly column "Between the Lines," he oversees the Sacramento Bee Book Club, in which well-known authors give free presentations to the public.

Read his Counter Culture reviews here
(916) 321-1128
Twitter: @apierleonisacbe

Blair Anthony Robertson is The Sacramento Bee's food critic.

Read his restaurant reviews here
(916) 321-1099
Twitter: @Blarob

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