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Eric Lee, Manager of Bakery and Vegetable prep for Central Foods at Ohio University, begins to gather all of the foods the University purchased that day at the Chesterhill Produce Auction into a truck.
Ohio University/Christina Baird

Ohio report chronicles successes, challenges of university-supported produce auction

Mary Reed
March 3, 2010

The Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs issued a report March 18, 2010 that chronicles the story of the produce auction where Ohio University purchases food for its dining programs, including a set of best practices that other communities can follow if they want to start a similar auction.

The idea that a produce auction thrives better with committed produces and buyers is one of 10 considerations the document lists as important to the startup and functioning of a successful produce auction. Other considerations include identifying target customers, partnering with a local organization and developing a sales-tracking system.

The Central Appalachian Network commissioned the Voinovich School to produce the report with $5,000 in funding from the Ford Foundation and the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation. Seven nonprofit organizations in the central Appalachian region make up CAN, including Rural Action, an Athens County-based nonprofit that helped launch the auction and then helped forge the Ohio University connection.

For a complete copy of the report click here.