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Farm to School training offered

The training will help producers learn how to market locally raised food to schools.

February 14, 2022

2 Min Read
Children in cafeteria eating
LOCAL EATS: More than 30 million students are fed each day across the U.S. through the National School Lunch Program, offering a tremendous opportunity for producers to help supply locally raised food to students in the community. Dag Sundberg/Getty images

Farmers, ranchers and local food processors can learn strategies for growing and selling their products to school districts at “Bringing the Farm to School: Local Producer Training” from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 3 at the Douglas-Sarpy counties Extension office in Omaha. The event is hosted by the Nebraska Department of Education.  

“When area farmers sell their products to schools, everyone wins,” says Sarah Smith, Farm to School coordinator for the Nebraska Department of Education. “Farmers have a reliable market, dollars get recirculated in the community and, most importantly, students get to enjoy local, fresh, nutritious and delicious food.”

Producers who attend this training will learn about accessing school markets and growing products for schools, and hear from producers who have successfully navigated school markets. They will gain knowledge and resources for integrating school markets into a business plan, meet local peers and experts, and participate in a question-and-answer session.  

Schools offer a strong market opportunity for local producers. More than 30 million students enjoy meals at school through the National School Lunch Program each day, and according to a USDA Farm to School census, schools across the country bought more than $789 million in local foods during the 2013-14 school year — a total that has continued to increase.

At the state level, 553 Nebraska schools serving 235,367 students participate in Farm to School efforts. The program is gaining momentum in Nebraska with more schools and producers partnering every year.  

The development of this training was funded, in part, with federal funds from USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service through an agreement with the National Center for Appropriate Technology, in partnership with the National Farm to School Network.  

The training will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 3. To register, visit education.ne.gov, or contact Smith by calling 402-525-3128 or emailing [email protected]

Source:  IANR News, which is solely responsible for the information provided and is wholly owned by the sources. Informa Business Media and all its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset.

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