Tag Archives: Farm to School

CFSN Webinar: Advancing Collective Buying for Regional Small and Mid-Size K-12 Districts in the Central Coast – Lessons Learned and Directions

Please register for Advancing Collective Buying for Regional Small and Mid-Size K-12 Districts in the Central Coast: Lessons Learned and Directions on Jun 8, 2017 11:00 AM PDT at:


Over the last three years over ten school districts in Santa Cruz and Monterey County, in concert with farm to school organizational partners, have developed joint purchasing contracts on produce to build upon existing collaborative sourcing acros–s multiple districts. This webinar will highlight a 2014-2017 CDFA specialty crop block grant’s development of a produce RFP that prioritizes regional and California grown fruit and vegetables as well as complementary promotion and engagement efforts that have increased student healthy eating behavior. Through presentations from K-12 cooperative purchasing district leads and partners from the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) and Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) participants will gain new resources to aid their district and regional sourcing and promotion efforts. In addition, this session will also create a facilitated discussion space to explore collective buying challenges and barriers in order to inform future K-12 efforts.

CFSN Finds a New Home: Transitioning the Network to CDFA

Written by: Nicole Sturzenberger, CDFA, Office of Farm to Fork

The California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Farm to Fork is excited to begin the transition of the California Farm to School Network to our office. As the new Network lead, we look forward to strengthening the already robust movement built by CAFF and all farm to school stakeholders throughout California. During and after this transition, we will continue partnerships with CAFF, leading procurement efforts, UEPI, leading early childhood education work, and Lifelab, leading school garden efforts. The Office was also selected as the 2017-2019 National Farm to School Network California Core Partner and looks forward to communicating national farm to school efforts. These new roles recognize the Office’s leadership in the farm to school efforts and will provide new opportunities for us to continue building capacity and support for farm to school and early childhood education (ECE) activities in California. Continue reading

Slow Food USA-Whole Kids Foundation Garden to Cafeteria Toolkit Webinar

The Garden to Cafeteria toolkit is a study on the most successful garden to cafeteria programs in the US and a toolkit for how to implement the same in your garden and cafeteria program.

Join this webinar to learn more about the toolkit and how your school district can apply to receive on-site training from the Slow Food USA National School Garden Program to implement it.

Register here

Building Garden Support through Sprout Scouts

Written By: Mariah Marten-Ray, FoodCorps Service Member with One Cool Earth

Cross-posted from FoodCorps.org’s Field Reports

Students had just returned from summer vacation, and I welcomed my Sprout Scouts—the after school garden club—into the garden at Virginia Peterson Elementary School in Paso Robles, CA.  It was a hot and arid day. With every foot step dust and dry grass poofed into the air, and I felt like a kindred soul to the wilty leaves of the tomatoes and squashes.  Kids began racing into the garden at full speed as if it was a waterpark, their faces mystified by how much change their ½ acre garden had gone through over the summer.  Where my eyes saw chaotic overgrowth, their eyes saw a jungle to explore and a school year of gardening projects.

Continue reading

Connecting the Garden, Cafeteria and Classroom…what’s next?

Written By: Allie Hoffman, Program Manager, Community Alliance with Family Farmers

Three weeks ago, 340 California Farm to School and Garden practitioners gathered in Modesto for three days of field trips, workshops, inspiring keynotes, networking and food.

Helen Dombalis sharing her Farm to School story during the opening keynote

Attendees represented all areas of farm to school, ranging from farmers, to food service professionals, garden educators, government employees, nonprofits and more. It’s hard to focus on any one single moment from the conference to highlight in this article, particularly because there were so many different workshops that one could have attended. So instead, I’m going to share a few of the highlights from my experience planning and attending the conference.

Leading up to the conference, I was fortunate enough to have the job of connecting with so many of you. Whether I was reviewing workshop proposals, connecting with partners on social media or coordinating with the amazing CFSN regional leads, it was such a pleasure to get to connect with farm to school innovators from all around the state. Continue reading