Congratulations on another incredible week of Farm to School Month!
This week we're celebrating farmers and producers - the movers and shakers across the supply chain that make local foods served in schools and early care and education settings possible. In Michigan, there are so many producers that are integral to farm to school efforts, so honor them this week! Write stories about your local producers for social media, school newsletters, or your local paper, and share them using the hashtag #F2SMonth.
One of the programs in Michigan that helps connect farmers with schools is Hoophouses for Health, and currently, this program has helped connect 20 farmers with 29 different schools and early childhood programs throughout Michigan. One of those partnerships, between Sharkar Farms and Calumet Center in Southeastern Michigan, has really taken off! Calumet Center, a MI Farm to School Grantee, is a residential child care institute in Highland Park, MI that has increased their local food sourcing through their close partnership with Sharkar Farms. We recently highlighted this great partnership and the impact it's having on the food served at Calumet Center, and the additional impact of having new year-round markets for Sharkar Farms. Be sure to check out the video for your extra dose of inspiration this week.
Can't get enough of the folks putting the "Farm" in Farm to School? Check out this awesome local story on another Hoophouses for Health farmer, Presque Isle Farm, and their work with Rogers City Area Schools. This is a great story to show how farmers can be the initiators of farm to school activity.
And last, don't forget to check out the National Farm to School Network blog this week (and every week!) for great stories on the farmers throughout the country that are integral to farm to school! This week, they're highlighting the work of the Hmong American Farmers Association in Minnesota, which sells produce to Head Start programs. Through this partnership, not only are the farmers seeing increased profits but it's allowed an opportunity to share Hmong culture with young learners.
And don't forget to pledge to take one small step and be entered to win prizes for your school or ECE site!
Best, and happy eating!
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