Friday, September 2, 2011

October - National Farm to School Month - Colorado Resources

To celebrate the first National Farm to School Month, schools across the country will be inviting farmers and chefs to visit their school during the month of October.

The National Farm to School Network has developed a National Farm to School Network Website to provide a host of resources and downloadable materials to promote Farm to School Month.

Materials available online include:
  • A Communications Toolkit contains basic information about promoting National Farm to School Month, including a sample press release, social media suggestions and sample newsletter language.
  • Downloadable logos.
  • A Fact Sheet that explains Farm to School and National Farm to School Month and offers suggestions for how teachers, families, school food service professionals and farmers can get involved throughout October and beyond.
  • A PowerPoint Slideshow including the Farm to School Month logo and basic facts and statistics about Farm to School. Customize it to fit your needs.
  • A Sample Menu that shows how you might incorporate language about Farm to School Month into your cafeteria menu.
You can also get a good deal of information and Colorado resources for schools, producers, webinars, and Colorado School District Partnerships from the Colorado Farm to School Task Force site.  Just some of the resources available on the Colorado Farm to School Task Force site for producers, as an example, include:

  • Colorado Farm to Market - This site has a wealth of information for Colorado producers and food product manufacturers who want to sell direct to consumers including institutions such as schools. 
  • Colorado MarketMaker - If you are a registered MarketMaker user, log into your profile and find the "Methods of Sale" area under the type of products you offer.  Check "Farm to School" box.
  • USDA Geographic Preference for Child Nutrition Programs & Other Food Assistance Programs - As of May 23, 2011, schools (and other providers) may give preference to locally grown and locally raised agricultural products for the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast, Special Milk, Child and Adult Care, Fresh Fruit and Vegetable, and Summer Food Service programs.  This rule gives a competitive boost to local producers.  The rule is part of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.
Interested organizations can also email info@farmtoschoolmonth.org if:
  • your organization would like to be listed as a partner for National Farm to School Month celebrations.
  • you are planning a special Farm to School event or activity in October
  • you have any questions on the materials.
The National Farm to School Network has also created a Twitter hashtag to help connect participant, so jump in and join the discussion at #F2SMonth.

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