Blog Archive

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

November News Bites




Here are the latest Farm to School news bites:




Sponsored by the Michigan Nutrition Network, Michigan State University Extension and the C.S. Mott Professor of Sustainable Agriculture at MSU, the Michigan Junior Chef Competition was held at Michigan State University (MSU) in September to promote healthy eating and Michigan foods. A competition summary and Flash slideshow are now posted online at the MNN website. The recipes from the student-designed school lunch meals and a short video of the competition are coming soon!  


Small distributors focus on getting local produce to state’s restaurants, schools and grocery stores Check out this story from the Detroit Free Press about Locavore Food Distributors based at Detroit Eastern Market. Locavore works with a number of schools in Michigan and Chicago to help get local produce into school meals programs!


Minnesota farm to school efforts catch eye of USDA Deputy Secretary Merrigan: School districts around the state embracing Farm to School program” USDA Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan toured St. Paul Schools’ commissary to get a look at the district’s Farm to School program. St. Paul Public Schools purchased over 100,000 pounds of local produce in just the first few weeks of the school year! Read the attached PDF press release, and check out this related story - USDA: St. Paul Public Schools ‘Pioneers’ in Farm-to-School Programs.


Local high schoolers cooking up change for their cafeterias” 15 Chicago public high schools competed in Cooking Up Change, a healthy cooking contest which challenged teams to create nutritious school lunches on a tight budget with limited ingredients and prep work. Check out a video about the competition!


Spotlight on Food Service: Chartwells' Bob Bloomer redefines "fresh" for Chicago Public Schools” Bob Bloomer, regional Vice President with Chartwells in Chicago, is working with farmers and processors to extend availability of local products through flash-freezing.


Vilsack still backs nutrition funding” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack reaffirmed the administration’s plans to ask Congress for an additional $1 billion per year for child nutrition programs like the National School Lunch Program.


USDA Backs Rewarding Schools Serving Healthy Foods” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that schools that serve more fruits, vegetables and whole grains to pupils should see higher federal support rates than those serving meals that are less healthy.






Great Lakes Fruit, Vegetable and Farm Market Expo

December 8-10, 2009

DeVos Place Convention Center and Amway Grand Hotel, Grand Rapids, MI

Check out the website for more info.


Farm To School Workshop for Farmers

Wednesday, December 16, 2009 from 9:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.

Kent County Extension Office

Grand Rapids, MI

Please find the brochure and registration form attached in PDF format. Please register by December 4.

For more information, contact Kendra Wills, Land Use Educator, at (616) 336-2028.


Green Initiatives in School Wellness Webinar

Sponsored by the USDA Food & Nutrition Service, Midwest Region

Tuesday, December 15th from 2 PM – 3:30 PM CST

Participation is free, but registration is required by Friday, December 11th.

Click here to register:

See attached flyer for more information! 


2009 Michigan Family Farms Conference

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Lakeview High School, Battle Creek, MI

See the brochure at the MIFFS website


Northern Michigan Small Farm Conference

Saturday, January 30, 2009 with keynote speaker, Melissa Hemmelgarn, on Friday, January 29th

Grayling High School in Grayling, MI

Find more information on the conference website.


Choices 2010, Collaboration: There's Room at the Table 

Wednesday, March 10 -11, 2010 in East Lansing, Michigan. 

Registration opens Jan. 11, 2010 

For more information, visit


Farm to School: Setting the Table for Wellness

Sponsored by the Michigan Land Use Institute (MLUI)

Monday, March 15, 2010 at the Grand Traverse Resort & Spa in Acme, MI. 

For conference info visit

See Save the Date attached for more event information!  





CFSC’s National Farm to College Program is happy to announce that they have redesigned their website,  The site is a clearinghouse of resources and information for both new and existing farm to college projects with profiles of 140 projects from around the country.

Happy Thanksgiving,


Colleen Matts

Farm to School Specialist

CS Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems

Michigan State University

303 Natural Resources Building

East Lansing, MI 48824-1222




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