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Peoria Grown expands Market 309 to serve Bradley University students

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Peoria Grown is opening its second Market 309 location on the Bradley University campus this week.

Healthy food access can be a real problem on college campuses across the country. Two Bradley University professors surveyed students and found an unmet need on campus.

Julie Eliathamby of Peoria Grown says food insecurity happens in higher education more than people think:

"A lot of these kids are on a very tight budget," she said. "So a lot of things that they want to eat, it's either beyond their budget or something that they cannot afford on a consistent basis."

Peoria Grown currently offers affordable produce at its Market 309 location at the Logan Recreation Center in South Peoria. Eliathamby says the Bradley student population has different needs.

"We are repackaging some of the things to smaller packages to make it easier for students to store in their little refrigerators they have in their dormitories," Eliathamby said.

Ultimately, Eliathamby says Peoria Grown also wants to offer a third site providing fresh, affordable foods to those living near campus, as well.

"We are looking at sites outside to serve the community surrounding the Bradley area, because that's another need of those neighborhoods," she said.

The first Market 309 for Bradley students is happening from 3 to 5 p.m. Firday on the Olin Quad.