San Francisco Bay Area

Bay Area

Regional Lead: Ben Thomas, Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF),

About Ben and Community Alliance with Family Farmers

IMG_0695Ben provides technical assistance to farmers to sell their products to schools and hospitals and works with institutional food service buyers to provide education on local food and food systems. Ben has worked with college and university sustainable food procurement and education since 2009 and joined CAFF after managing the sustainable food service program at UC Davis Dining Services.

Founded in 1978, the Community Alliance with Family Farmers is a California-based nonprofit that advocates for family farmers and sustainable agriculture. We run extensive, on-the-ground programs in many regions throughout California, enabling community members and businesses to find and choose local food, and helping farmers increase their income and sustainability. CAFF has been recognized nationally and internationally for its pioneering programs, and played key roles in enacting the nation’s toughest laws regulating pesticide use; promoting the development of organic farming; bringing fresh, local produce into school cafeterias; and establishing programs to distribute locally grown produce to community grocery stores, hospitals, restaurants and farmers markets.

Upcoming events

Stay tuned! 

Key publications and resources published

Find Farm to School procurement and education tools at

How to get involved

For any information on the Bay Area Farm to School Network or to get involved, email Ben Thomas at

Farm to School resources in the region

We organize Bay Area Purchasing Collaboratives to bring together schools and hospitals with common produce distributors that are interested in increasing their local family farm purchasing and transparency.

Local food initiatives in the region

Coming soon!