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"Tasting Kits" for Local Schools from Local Farmers

PHOTO: Members of the Community Alliance with Family Farmers prepare boxes of fresh food for local schools. Courtesy of CAFF.
PHOTO: Members of the Community Alliance with Family Farmers prepare boxes of fresh food for local schools. Courtesy of CAFF.
December 10, 2012

DAVIS, Calif. - Connecting small farmers to their local schools to provide healthy food for low-income kids is an idea whose time has come. The Community Alliance with Family Farmers in Davis, just west of Sacramento, just won a $100,000 two-year grant to expand on its efforts, says the Farm to School program director for the Alliance, Diana Abellera.

"Farm-to-school programs have been really successful in creating more access to healthy food among the students who need it the most."

She says it also helps local farmers.

"Our farmers can benefit, particularly our small farmers in these communities that are right next to the schools, and really being able to create a new economic opportunity for growers that are really struggling."

Abellera says a similar program on the central coast has been especially successful with its approach.

"And that program allows us to distribute tasting kits of local produce, sourced from local farmers, with farmer profiles, to teachers around the county."

That program has already reached some 1000 teachers. Abellera says the grant will enable teachers in Santa Rosa city schools to participate, and then allow the program to expand to other parts of Sonoma County.

Melinda Tuhus, Public News Service - CA