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National Farm to School Network is an information, advocacy and networking hub for communities working to bring local food sourcing and food and agriculture education into school systems and early care and education settings.
Farm to school empowers children and their families to make informed food choices
while strengthening the local economy and contributing to vibrant communities.
National Farm to School Network provides vision, leadership and support at the state, regional and national
levels to connect and expand the farm to school movement, which has grown from
a handful of schools in the late 1990s to approximately 42,000 schools in all 50
states as of 2014. Our network includes national staff, Core Partners, an advisory board and thousands of farm to school supporters.
National Farm to School Network was launched in 2007 by a collaborative of more than 30 organizations seeking
to shape the burgeoning farm to school movement. Initially led by staff from the
Community Food Security Coalition and the Urban & Environmental Policy
Institute at Occidental College, National Farm to School Network is now a project of the Tides Center.
National Farm to School Network increases access to local food and nutrition education to improve children’s health, strengthen family farms, and cultivate vibrant communities.
National Farm to School Network envisions a nation in which farm to school programs are an essential component of strong and just local and regional food systems, ensuring the health of all school children, farms, environment, economy and communities.
Our network is the heart of our organization. Our structure allows information to move from the local level to the national level and across all states and regions.
Regional Leads: Eight organizations (a mixture of non-profits, state departments and universities) serve as Regional Lead Agencies (RLAs) for the National Farm to School Network. These core partners support on-the-ground farm to school efforts and coordinate advocacy and networking among the states in their region. They also share information, resources, needs and opportunities from their region with the rest of the National Farm to School Network.
State Leads: Based at various non-profit organizations, state agencies and universities, State Leads coordinate farm to school advocacy efforts and network in their states, sharing local information, resources, needs and opportunities with the rest of the National Farm to School Network.
Network members: More than 12,000 farm to school practitioners and supporters have joined our network. Network members support the mission of the National Farm to School Network by advocating for supportive policies, volunteering in their communities and supporting the organization financially as they are able. Members receive our monthly email newsletter and are the first to hear about special events like the National Farm to Cafeteria Conference. Membership is free.