The 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, the environment, economy and communities.
Farm to School is broadly defined as a program that connects schools (K-12) and local farms with the objectives of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health and nutrition education opportunities, and supporting local and regional farmers. Since each Farm to School program is shaped by its unique community and region, the National Farm to School Network does not prescribe or impose a list of practices or products for the Farm to School approach.
At its core, Farm to School is about establishing relationships between local foods and school children. Farm to School programs include (but are not limited to):
The National Farm to School Network aims to enable every child to have access to nutritious food while simultaneously benefiting communities and local farmers.
The National Farm to School Network supports the implementation of Farm to School in all 50 states and the District of Columbia through focused work in the following priority areas: 1) policy development; 2) training and technical assistance; 3) information development and dissemination; 4) networking; 5) media and marketing; and 6) research and evaluation.
Our network includes national staff, eight regional lead agencies, 50 state leads who serve as local points of contact for information and resources, and thousands of Farm to School advocates and community leaders from all over the country. Join our network and you will receive our email newsletter. You will also be able to add events and information to our website.
The 2014-2016 Strategic Plan of the National Farm to School Network outlines key organizational priorities and goals for the next three years. The strategic planning process was undertaken from May through December 2013, with inputs gathered from nearly 390 individuals and organizations who represent a cross-section of our 8,000+ member network. For more information or comments, contact Anupama Joshi, Executive Director. Click here to download a PDF of the strategic plan.
From just a handful of programs in the late 1990's, Farm to School is now operational in more than 10,000 schools spanning all 50 states. Click here for the Chronology of Farm to School.
The National Farm to School Network was founded in 2007 through a year-long collaborative planning process engaging more than 30 organizations across the country. The National Farm to School Network was co-led by staff from the Community Food Security Coalition (CFSC) and the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute (UEPI) at Occidental College until 2011, under whose guidance and leadership the organization blossomed and grew significantly, providing assistance to Farm to School programming in all 50 states through an expanding national and regional infrastructure and staff. We are thankful to the commitment of the two founding organizations and all individuals who invested time and effort for laying a solid framework for the future of Farm to School programming in the country. In late 2011, the National Farm to School Network became a project of Tides Center.
Click here for a summary of our accomplishments.
Executive Director & Co-Founder (based in North Carolina)
Associate Director (Based in Montana)
Policy and Strategic Partnerships Director (based in Washington, D.C.)
Development Manager (based in San Francisco)
Communications Associate (based in New York City)
Operations Associate (based in Chicago)
National Farm to School Network Tel: 630-207-3855
Mailing address for all staff:
National Farm to School Network
P.M.B # 104
8770 West Bryn Mawr Ave, Suite 1300
Chicago, IL 60631-3515