Category Archives: Uncategorized

Farmer to School Mixer a Hit in the South Central Coast

Written by: Luisa Accorsi, FoodCorps Service Member with Conejo Valley Unified School District

IMG_0597Getting connected is a big goal for the participants of the South Central Coast Regional of the CA Farm to School Network. This particular network includes Conejo Valley, Ventura, Rio, Oxnard, Hueneme, and Ojai. Last month we threw a mixer with the intention of bringing together our food service directors, farmers, and garden and nutrition educators so that we could get to know one another better and show each other what we’re doing at our sites. Continue reading

California Thursdays: Collective Action Day

Written by: Sandy Curwood, RDN, MS, Director of Child Nutrition Services with Conejo Valley Unified School District 

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Director of Child Nutrition Services, Sandy Curwood, serves up a California Thursdays® recipe at the CA Farm to School Network Conference last spring.

California Thursdays® is what’s for lunch in school cafeterias across the golden state. On March 17th, 58 California school districts collectively took action showcasing the abundance of seasonal, regionally procured, delicious and nutritious foods in school cafeterias.  Continue reading

The Life Cycle of a Produce Market Seedling

Written by: Cassie Spindler, FoodCorps Service Member with Oakland Unified School District 

 IMG_0291There are so many joyful moments as a FoodCorps service member, and they originate from the biggest successes, like sourcing 17,000 weekly servings of local and organic oranges for our Harvest of the Month program, to the smallest, like a student coming back for second helpings of a new food after you had to wheedle them to take first helpings to begin with. And there are teachable moments aplenty as well, as many for you as for your students. Of course: sometimes the days are long, sometimes there’s fried rice from recipe testing stuck to the inside of your car, and sometimes the bureaucracy of effecting change seems insurmountable, but at the end of the day, everybody agrees: we do it for the kids. Continue reading

Taste Tests as an Agent for Change

Written by: Jen Swanstrom, FoodCorps Service Member with Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) North Coast

In a nation where nine out of ten kids do not eat enough vegetables every day, I am thrilleDecHOTM_turnip taste testd to be serving in a position that allows me to help build enthusiasm around healthy foods instead of chips, soda, or sugary treats. It may not seem like the easiest of tasks, but through fun lessons and repeated exposure, I have seen very real excitement around trying new vegetables!

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North Coast Farm to School Supporters Visit Little Lake Grange

Written by: Ally Lemmer, FoodCorps CA Fellow with Life Lab & Community Alliance with Family Farmers 

23520139090_e667b22cee_zFormally Willits High School and historically a meeting place for farmers, the Little Lake Grange in Willits served as a perfect venue for all farm to school advocates in the North Coast region on Friday, December 11th, 2015. Food service directors, farmers, and educators all convened for the first ever North Coast Regional Gathering on behalf of the CA Farm to School Network, which was just launched a year prior.   Continue reading

If You Fail to Plan Are You Planning to Fail?

Written by: Kira McNealy, FoodCorps Service Member with San Diego Unified School District

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FoodCorps Service Members, Corrie King and Kira McNealy, with USDA Undersecretary of Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Sciences, Kevin Concannon.

I’ve never been much of a planner. In fact, even meal prep gives me some sort of anxiety because knowing what’s on the menu every day for a week just doesn’t serve me well. Though I was quick to line up internships in college and excel scholastically, I didn’t put much thought into what came next. Getting my degree was really the pinnacle of my life. One thing I did plan for, however, was to find meaningful, fulfilling work and when I stumbled across FoodCorps in a Google search I really stopped looking.  Continue reading