Blog Archive

Thursday, October 31, 2019

10 Cents a Meal Request


I hope you can take a moment to complete this short, 14-question survey to help Groundwork Center evaluate communication efforts around 10 Cents a Meal, Michigan's state program that helps schools put locally grown produce onto the cafeteria plates of our children—and hopefully soon early child care centers as well.
It's an important time for 10 Cents. We want to make sure our communications are effective. Please fill out this short survey to let us know what is working well and, just as importantly, how you think we can improve to help you know more about 10 Cents and be able to share information about it with others. Completing the survey also will enter you to win $50! Let your voice be heard—click this link now. You'll be happy you did!

Thanks so much,


*Please note my email address has changed to

Diane Conners  |  Senior Policy Specialist
Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities

P   231-499-3937

T   @grndwk

A  148 E Front St, Suite 301  |  Traverse City, MI 49684 

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

In November, we are grateful for Michigan farm to school 🍁

November 2019
Dear Michigan Farm to School subscribers,

As the days shorten and we prepare for the colder temperatures ahead, we hope you are able to take a few moments to reflect on all of the ways you have helped connect farms and local producers with children to increase access to local, healthy, affordable products.

We hope you enjoy the bounty of fall produce this season!
Great Lakes Apple Crunch by the Numbers
Over 1.8 million people crunched into apples during the 2019 Great Lakes Apple Crunch!

Out of the six Great Lakes states, Michigan came in third place for the highest number of participants, with 322,104 total crunchers. Michigan also had the highest number of adults (46,985) and the third highest number of K-12 students participating (275,119). 

Check out the Michigan Apple Crunch on Facebook for photos and videos of participants across the state.
Celebrating the Garden Harvest in Maine
Elementary students in Maine used their school garden harvest for a school-wide celebration and event to learn more about where food comes from.

Traverse City Area Public Schools Celebrate Farm to School Month
Northern Michigan farms supplied local products including kale, apples, and even hots dogs to students in Traverse City for Farm to School Month.

Nine Louisiana Schools Integrate School Gardens for Learning
Students are able to plan, grow, harvest and then cook produce from school gardens. A cooking competition heightens the excitement for 80 students across the nine schools. 

FoodCorps Service Member On the Importance of Nutrition Education
During her time as a FoodCorps Service Member at Suttons Bay Elementary School, Erin Baumann recognized the importance of nutrition education early in life.

Webinar - Kids Win and Farms Win: What Do We Know About the Impacts of Farm to School
November 7, 1:00 p.m. ET

Advocates claim that 'kids win, farmers win, and communities win' from policies, programming, and initiatives that promote farm to school. However, what do we know about the extent to which this is true? This webinar, featuring researchers from Colorado State University and University of Illinois, will highlight recent and ongoing research and important areas for future farm to school work

2020 Oregon Farm to School and School Garden Conference
February 12-13, 2020
Silverton, Oregon

The Oregon Farm to School and School Garden Conference will feature workshops, speakers, resources, and networking opportunities over two days. Day one will be focused on farm and garden based education. Day two will be focused on incorporating local food into school meals. Conference organizers are accepting proposals for workshops through November 1. 

10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 21-23, 2020
Albuquerque, New Mexico

The 10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is a national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals and advocates working to improve community health, advance equity and justice, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide.

The National Farm to School Network is accepting applications for scholarships through November 1 at 6pm ET. 

Farm to ECE Added to SNAP-Ed Toolkit
Farm to early care and education (farm to ECE) is now included in the SNAP-Ed Toolkit! Learn more about farm to ECE as a research-tested policy, systems and environmental change intervention strategy in the updated SNAP-Ed Toolkit intervention listing.

Two Articles About Indigenous Food Sovereignty in North America
The Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development highlights two new "Voices from the Grassroots" articles on the topic of Indigenous Food Sovereignty in North America.

The role of reclaiming sovereignty over a community’s traditional foods and the local food system is presented in Reviving and Reclaiming Our Native Food System: Leadership Experiences of a Research Project's Community Advisory Board.

The Northwest Tribal Food Sovereignty Coalition shares how the network of tribal nations, tribal organizations, and allied partners worked to build tribal food sovereignty in Northwest Tribal Food Sovereignty Coalition: An Intertribal Collaboration.

School Leaders Campaign from Vermont Farm to School
A new toolkit from the Vermont Farm to School Network is available! You can use this step-by-step guide to start or restart the conversation with your school leaders and work toward a district commitment for farm to school.

Farm-to-School Education Grants Reach Low-Income Children and Encourage Them to Learn about Fruits and Vegetables
The Farm to School Education Grant Program in Oregon was established to increase knowledge of and preference for produce among children in low-income school districts. Find out about the reach of the education grants and their influence on food choices and behaviors among children in schools in the grant program. 

Public Comment Period for SNAP Categorical Eligibility Reopened
November 1

The United States Department of Agriculture has proposed a change in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, also formerly known as “food stamps”) that would amend the categorical eligibility provision allowing families whose income would typically be too high to receive SNAP benefits to qualify based on their participation in other federal benefits programs. USDA recently released a report showing that nearly 1 million children could lose access to school meals as a result of this rule change. USDA has reopened the comment period to allow people to utilize this new data to make a decision. 

USDA Farm to School Grant Applications Open
December 27

The Office of Community Food Systems has announced the availability of the new FY 2020 Regional Farm to School Institute Grant Request for Applications. The Fiscal Year 2020 grant will support the creation and dissemination of information on farm to school program development and provide practitioner education and training, and ongoing school year coaching and technical assistance.

About Michigan Farm to School

Farm to School centers around efforts to serve local foods in school and early care and education settings. We share ideas, tools and resources to support a range of efforts, from school garden programming to farmer visits and field trips.

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