In February 2022, California’s First Partner, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and the California Department of Food and Agriculture published a landmark report underscoring the importance of the Farm to School movement for this ag-rich state.
Farm to School is a movement to source school meals from local and regional farms and educate students about food. It’s also a multi-benefit solution: by strengthening food and nutrition security for school children; reducing fossil fuel and climate impacts by sourcing more food locally; and more.
The report, “Planting the Seed: Farm to School Roadmap for Success,” serves as an essential guidepost for advancing the Farm to School movement in California; it provides key recommendations based on in-depth conversations with diverse stakeholders from around the state.
Ag Innovations supported this extensive CDFA report by designing and facilitating an eight-month-long learning journey for over 80 stakeholders that informed and deepened knowledge.
Read the Farm to School Roadmap for Success to learn what next steps could help elevate Farm to School efforts in California.
Download: Planting the Seed: Farm to School Roadmap for Success
“I learned that Farm-to-School brings folks from many different corners of the school food universe together. I felt that this workgroup is deeply committed to the program’s success. I am committed to working as hard as possible to make sure that we get the resources needed to realize our F2S vision!”
Provide Scalable Support Structures for Farm to School Growth
- Permanently Fund the California Farm to School Incubator Grant Program and Build Regional Farm to School Hubs
- Leverage Public-Private Partnerships
Transform School Meal Environments and Experiences in Collaboration with Youth
- Pilot Local Farm to School Staff Positions
- Incentivize School Nutrition Best Practices
- Reward Innovation and Improvement
Invest in School Food Careers and Scratch Cooking Infrastructure
- Support School Kitchen Infrastructure Funding
- Increase School Nutrition Budgets
- Develop the Farm to School Workforce
- Expand the School Nutrition Support System
Develop Model Food Education Standards and Expand Youth Leadership Opportunities
- Develop Model K–12 Food Education Standards
- Create Online Accessibility
- Increase Youth and Educator Engagement
Strengthen Relationships Between Producers and Schools
- Invest in Regional Marketplace Specialists
- Prioritize Food System Equity and Climate Smart Agriculture
Expand and Create Inclusive Access to School Food Markets for a Wide Range of California Producers
- Leverage Grant Dollars for Equity and Climate
- Establish Equity and Impact Goals
- Transform Food System Infrastructure and Federal Policy
Change the Culture of School Food through Storytelling
- Share the stories of school food leaders
Establish Consistent Impact Metrics for California Farm to School
- Invest in Evaluation and Research
- Develop an Annual California Farm to School Census