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From the field to the patient: A rural food recovery-based produce Rx program

Stroud BJ, Sastre LR
Health Promot Pract

Poor nutrition is a major risk factor for chronic diseases, and emerging produce prescription (PRx) programs are a growing approach to addressing gaps in diet quality to promote health. This article describes a food recovery-based PRx framework called Farm to Clinic (F2C). The F2C program includes a partnership between the North Carolina Association of Free and Charitable Clinics (NCAFCC), Society of Saint Andrews (SoSA), and a local food bank. Patients (n = 4,691) were rural, uninsured, and received care at one of three NCAFCC clinics in Eastern North Carolina. Student volunteers gathered gleaned and/or salvaged produce and delivered it to clinics and/or patients directly. Successes of the current model include complementing chronic disease management and health promotion in a cost-effective way that also assists with reducing food waste. In addition, the patients who participate in the program are connected with produce at their primary care clinic and do not have to drive to an additional community site for produce. Some challenges have included consistency with gleaning; therefore, the program has switched to primarily salvaged produce. Areas for expansion and improvement on the F2C model are also outlined and include incorporating a more prioritized eligibility criteria, provision of additional complimentary resources such as nutrition education and culinary support, as well as improved formal evaluation (e.g., use of food and clinical impact). Finally, the F2C model utilizes community partners that have been established nationwide which allows for replication of a framework in other geographic areas.

Stroud BJ, Sastre LR. From the field to the patient: a rural food recovery-based produce Rx program. Health Promot Pract. 2022 May 9:15248399221091546. DOI:10.1177/15248399221091546. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35533252

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