-South Carolina Farm to School Program
The South Carolina Farm to School Program is a 2-year pilot project funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in support of Eat Smart Move More South Carolina to create a statewide Farm to School program. This project is a joint effort of the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control, the SC Department of Agriculture, the SC Department of Education, and Clemson University.
Farm to School brings healthy food from South Carolina farms to school children. The program teaches students about the path from farm to fork and instills health eating habits that can last a lifetime. At the same time, use of South Carolina produce in school meals and educational activities provides a new direct market for farmers in the area and mitigates environmental impacts of transporting foods long distances. The mission for Farm to School is to connect schools (K-12) and South Carolina Farms with the objectives of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health and nutrition education opportunities, and supporting South Carolina Farmers.
Core components of the program include increasing the number of farmers that are certified to provide locally grown products into schools; providing education to foodservice staff and teachers on Farm to School practices; and providing hands-on learning activities to promote healthy eating among school children. This pilot project currently supports 52 school grantees in implementing the identified Farm to School components. In addition, information gathered from the Farm to School Program will be used to further guide the expansion of Farm to School to additional schools throughout South Carolina after this funding opportunity ends.