MADISON (AP) — A new program at a Wisconsin university aims to make it easier for students to get fresh produce.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison recently began the Campus Food Shed program, Wisconsin Public Radio reported.

The program has four refrigerators spread throughout campus. Pictures of donations in the fridge are posted on Facebook to let students know what's available.

"It creates more accessible locations for individuals to go depending on where they are, and all those places are always frequented by faculty, students and staff, so we want to reach as many people as possible," said founder Hannah DePorter.

DePorter said produce is usually gone within 24 hours of being put in a fridge. She said the program aims to reduce food waste and increase food security.

"Some days we have 200 pounds of produce going into these refrigerators," she said.
Food insecurity is a big issue on the university's campus, even if many people aren't aware of it, she said.

The senior was inspired to create the program when she was an administrator director for a sustainable agriculture organization on campus that distributes out free produce. She was also working in a plant breeding lab. She saw left over produce on both cases being composted.

"I wanted to be able to extend the life of all of these vegetables that are just being wasted and put them into people's hands," she said.

DePorter said she hopes to expand the program by working with local farmers who have extra produce.


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