Here are the latest Farm to School news bites:
Senate Passes Child Nutrition Bill
On August 5th, the Child Nutrition Bill known as the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act was passed in the Senate. This bill provides an additional $4.5 billion over 10 years to federal child nutrition programs, including a $.06 increase in reimbursements, expanded eligibility for school meals programs, and $40 million for a farm to school competitive grant program. In addition, the bill aims to improve the quality of school meals and mandates that the Department of Agriculture develop nutrition standards for all foods in schools, not just the food served in school meals programs. However, to fund these improvements in Child Nutrition Programs, this version of the bill makes cuts to important SNAP (formerly known as food stamp) benefits. To learn more, here’s an article from the Washington Post and a post from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition. Click here to read full bill text.
Income Guidelines for National Free and Reduced Price Meals for Schools, and Child and Adult Care Programs Announced
Please see the attached press release for income eligibility guidelines for free and reduced price meals and free milk through the National School Lunch, School Breakfast, Special Milk, and Child and Adult Care Food Programs for the 2010/2011 school year. Check out our School Food Budgets Fact Sheet for more info.
Farm To School: A Conversation with Marion Kalb, Part 2
Watch Marion Kalb of the National Farm to School Network continue her conversation about Farm to School here. Marion discusses some of the challenges, practical strategies, and opportunities to incorporate farm fresh foods into school meals programs.
Lentz Shares Love of Organic Foods With Community
Just one way Deb Lentz of Tantré Farm in Chelsea, MI has supported her community is by visiting classrooms in Ann Arbor Public School District for the past five years now, teaching kids about healthy eating and local foods. Read full story here.
School District & Farmers Team Up
Renee DeWindt, Food Service Director for Benzie area schools, is teaming up with farmers to get more local foods into school cafeterias with grant support. They’re looking for more farmers around the area to get involved! Read full story here.
School Food, Is there Hope? Chef Ann Cooper Opens the Lunch Box (Q & A)
Chef Ann Cooper, "the Renegade Lunch Lady," talks about The Lunch Box, a portal for recipes, tools, and community discussion. Read full interview.
NCR-SARE Announces 2010 Call for Proposals
Proposals are now being accepted for the 2010 North Central Region - Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (NCR-SARE) Farmer Rancher Grants (due December 2, 2010) and Youth and Youth Educator Grants (due January 14, 2011). More information for the Farmer Rancher Grants can be found here, and you can learn more about the Youth and Youth Educator Grants here. Contact Joan Benjamin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-681-5545 or 800-529-1342 with questions.
People's Garden School Pilot Program
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service is requesting applications to enter into a cooperative agreement to award grants to develop and run gardens at eligible high-poverty schools. See the Request for Applications attached for more information.
Farm to Institution Specialist
CS Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems
Michigan State University
303 Natural Resources Building
East Lansing, MI 48824-1222