Lots of opportunities coming up with the start of the school year. Make sure to keep your eye out for the MI Farm to School regional trainings coming out next week, and sign your school/early childhood program/organization up for the Michigan Apple Crunch! I saw the first apples of the season this week at the farmers market – a little daunting how quickly summer is passing, but good to start practicing that CRUNCH.
· Getting it There: The role of New England food distributors in providing local food to institutions – Farm to Institution New England (FINE)
o This report out of FINE presents findings and makes recommendations for food distributors, government, officials, funders, and institutions in how they can help move regional farm to institution work forward. Highly worth the read!
o Four final rules were added to the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) to ensure kids have access to healthy snacks and better nutrition. There's an emphasis on more fresh fruits and vegetables, and requires engaging more parents, students and community members in developing school wellness policies – a great place to encourage farm to school activities!
o The first in this series is coming up Monday, and focuses on season extension for farmers, which can be a great tool for those looking to sell more to schools and early childhood programs.
· Save the Date: MI Farm to School Regional Trainings – September, 2016
o Registration information along with speakers and agenda items will be sent out Monday. These trainings are open to the public and free to attend, and will be a great space to learn how to begin or expand your local purchasing efforts.
§ September 20 11:00 – 4:00 – Boyne Falls Public Schools, Boyne Falls
§ September 22 12:30 – 4:30 – Baxter Community Center, Grand Rapids
§ September 27 10:30 – 3:30 – Drew Farms, Detroit
· Michigan Apple Crunch – October 13, 2016
o On October 13, everyone is encouraged to CRUNCH into a Michigan grown apple, creating an echo heard state and nation wide! Register and follow on facebook for more information and to receive tools to aid in planning a successful event. Along with the other Great Lakes states, we're going for one million crunches!
· Making MI Recipes Work: A Culinary Training for School Nutrition Professionals
o Registration is now open for this series of hands-on trainings to help school nutrition professionals better utilize Michigan farm fresh produce. See attached flyers for more details about locations and dates of all training and contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with any questions.
· Community Food Systems Farm to School Fact Sheets – USDA FNS
o The Community Food Systems team has updated their fact sheets on farm to school
Farm to School Specialist
MSU Center for Regional Food Systems
480 Wilson Rd Rm 309 | East Lansing, MI 48824
(p) 517-432-4525 (f) 517-353-3834