This Week in Farm to School: 7/3/18
Webinars & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics in Farm to School: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear about innovative farm to summer initiatives from NFSN Core Partners in Kentucky and Massachusetts. Register here.
2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here.
3. School Garden Support Organization Leadership Institute
January 20-25, 2019
Join 20 other School Garden Support Organization teams from across the nation to strengthen your organization’s goal of enhancing professional development and ongoing support for school garden programs in your region. Learn more here and apply by August 10.
1. Senate Passes 2018 Farm Bill - No Farm to School Amendments Included
The Senate passed its farm bill last week without addressing many filed amendments, including two farm to school amendments: Geographic Preference and the Pilot Project for Unprocessed Fruits & Vegetables. Although the National Farm to School Network is disappointed these amendments weren't included, our combined advocacy efforts were effective in bringing farm to school issues to the forefront. We also gained many new farm to school champions through this process - thank you Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)! Thanks to everyone who made calls and continues to share the importance and successes of farm to school with policymakers. The National Farm to School Network continues to work with congressional champions to identify additional avenues for strengthening and advancing farm to school priorities.
Research & Resources
1. New Farm to School Research Indicates Increase in Fruit & Vegetable Consumption
A new article in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, “A Plate Waste Evaluation of a Farm to School Program,” indicates that participation in a farm to school program increases students’ fruit and vegetable consumption. Students at participating schools consumed, on average, 0.061 (P = .002) more servings of vegetables and 0.055 (P = .05) more servings of fruit after implementation of the farm to school program. Read more here.
1. Nutrition Services Director, Berkeley Unified School District (Berkeley, CA)
An exciting opportunity to shape the school food system of Berkeley is available. The School Nutrition Services Director plays a key role in the district's ability to innovate and provide students high quality and delicious school meals. Learn more here.
Farm to School in the News
Connecticut garden made accessible to all students
The community garden at Norfeldt Elementary School has long been an educational tool, but until now, it wasn't accessible in the same way for every student. That changed after the school received a grant to purchase two VegTrug raised gardens, which are elevated off the ground and accessible for all students, including those with physical disabilities. (Hartford Courant)
Many schools keep gardening efforts going all summer
For many schools across the country, the school year runs just the opposite of the growing season, making it difficult for educators to teach kids how to garden. But many school systems enlist volunteers to prep garden beds while students are on summer break, making the crops ready to tend when classes resume in September. (Associated Press)
Minnesota campers meet animals, taste herbs, envision ag careers
Middle- and high-school students in a Minnesota district are learning about agricultural careers at a camp hosted by the Minnesota State Engineering Center of Excellence. Students learn about animal and food science, and they made and took home a small hydroponics system. (The Free Press)