John Adams, 15, junior at Hiram Johnson High School, admits he was skeptical at first about participating in the Fresh Producers program. “I didn’t think people would want to buy fruits and vegetables,” Adams said.
His previous experience in sales was in junior high school, doing candy fundraisers. “Candy is easy to sell. In the Fresh Producers program I had to learn how I could sell fruits and vegetables to people. A big part of selling fruits and vegetables involves explaining the program to people and how it helps the community,” he said.
In addition to learning how to sell fresh fruits and vegetables to the community, Adams explained that he learned how to prepare them add them to his diet. “In six or seven months, I lost 30 pounds, just eating better and exercising more.”
He decided to use his new knowledge to help his parents and grandmother eat healthier food at home. “My mother loves McDonalds and sent me to get food and I read the calorie chart and got her food that had fewer calories,” he said. He also began preparing healthier meals at home for his family. “I learned how to shop, I figured out where to go to get the best prices on fresh food,” he added.
Adams says he is grateful for the opportunity to participate in the Fresh Producers program because, “Fresh Producers pushes you to do things you cannot do by yourself. I think it’s much easier to learn this stuff when you’re younger than later on in life.”
He advises other students to approach the program with an open mind. He said he was willing to try new foods and did not like everything he tried, but found that he liked a lot of new things and enjoyed his new lifestyle.
Going forward, Adams says of all the things he has learned so far, the most important lesson has been: “life is too short to not make decisions now. Don’t wait five or ten years, do it now instead of later.”