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"Veggie van" conference underway at UB

Chris Caya WBFO News

Operators of mobile food markets from across the nation are in downtown Buffalo for a two-day summit.

Lucia Leone, assistant professor of community health and health behavior in the University at Buffalo's School of Public Health and Health Professions, organized the event at the Jacobs School of Medicine.

Leone says UB received a $3.1 million grant to help organizations across the U.S. start or expand mobile produce and food markets. She says bringing healthy foods to poor communities sounds great, but it's not easy.   

Credit Chris Caya WBFO News
Lucia Leone organized the summit

"Part of it is how we price and sell produce to reach the right people and be able to increase access while getting a fair price for the farmers and also being able to be sustainable. And I think that's one of the biggest challenges that many of the markets face is being able to keep running," Leone said.

Leone says participants will share best practices and learn about the federally funded project led by UB researchers that can help them succeed. She says it is the first-ever mobile produce market conference in the U.S.