Students grow their own for a taste of 'The Good Life'
Press release issued: 2 June 2010
A new ‘Grow Your Own’ (GYO) scheme, which aims to encourage undergraduate students to grow and eat their own fruit and vegetables, has been launched at the University.
The scheme, which is supported by Homebase and the National Union of Students (NUS), aims to promote long-term behavioural and dietary change amongst students. The project is being rolled out at the universities of Bristol and Gloucestershire
Both universities will be provided with plants, seeds and tools, as well as advice and support from their local Homebase store. The University of Bristol Students’ Union will focus on developing its centenary garden orchard and allotments at its halls of residence as well as encouraging more people to get involved in the project through community gardening training schemes. The University of Gloucestershire aims to raise the profile of their union gardening scheme, which supports an off-campus allotment. The Union is also in the process of securing agreement for allotments on each individual campus.
Matthew Compton, Category Manager at Homebase said: "This initiative is about creating a generation of graduates with healthier, greener and more pocket-friendly eating habits. If students learn at this influential stage in their life to grow healthy, fresh food for themselves and their local communities we hope they will take those skills and that passion on into later life. The GYO category has increased 30 per cent year on year in 2009 and we want students to be able to benefit from this social trend."
Martin Wiles, Head of Sustainability at the University of Bristol, added: "It's great that the university has been able to be a part of this scheme with Homebase and the NUS, which will give students and volunteers the opportunity to get involved with growing their own food. We're looking forward to seeing our ideas and plants come to life.”
Susan Nash, Vice President of Society and Citizenship of NUS, said: "Recent NUS research has shown us that 42 per cent of students would grow their own fruit and vegetables if given the facilities and tools. The ‘Grow your Own’ scheme offers universities and students that opportunity, and we are looking forward to seeing the fruits of their labour in the near future."