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What is Farm to School?

Farm to School may be known as farm-to-fork, farm-to-table, farm-to-institution or many other names. Whichever name it is given, the goal is the same: to get more locally grown products into the cafeterias of schools, day care centers, colleges, hospitals, businesses and other institutions.

Farm to School programs can be as big as serving up locally grown foods in every meal or as simple as offering a locally grown product once. Large or small, each program is important and supports the health and well-being of students and family farmers.

Farm to School Works

Research carried out by the National Farm to School Network shows that Farm to School programs can result in:

  • Students consuming more fruits and vegetables and having greater knowledge of agriculture and healthy eating
  • School food service operations increasing both the amount of fresh fruits and vegetables served and increasing their revenues from adult and student participation in school meal programs
  • Farmers diversifying their markets, securing contracts for their products, and establishing grower collaboratives and cooperatives.

For more information, see the USDA Farm to School website