It takes creativity and innovation to introduce students to changes like the new meal patterns. As school nutrition professionals search for ways to successfully navigate the changes, they can give Farm to School a try. The benefits of Farm to School go far beyond providing another local source for the larger quantities of fruits and vegetables required by the new standards.
Farm to school connects children to healthy, locally sourced food through education, hands-on activities, field trips and more. When children learn that the healthy food in the school cafeteria tastes better because it’s fresh, they can learn to make healthier choices in and out of school. Schools can help students make this connection through opportunities like taste tastes, classroom activities and school gardens.
When children start eating more of the fresh fruits and vegetables in the classroom, it’s a win-win for everyone. They’re healthier and your cafeterias run more smoothly. Schools can incorporate a farm to school program and then promote it to increase interest in trying meals that meet the new standards.
The National Farm to School Network provides this information sheet to help schools incorporate the initiative and increase the success their nutrition programs.
Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass
This USDA-developed interactive map, illustrates farmers markets, food hubs, meat processors, federally supported local food projects and more.
Texas Farm Fresh Initiative
New to farm to school? This resource introduces the activities, benefits and other support tools available to bring farm to school to your program.