Summer is a time of agricultural abundance: plump stone fruits hang heavy on trees, juicy melons and tomatoes explode from their vines, beans begin to dry in their pods, and livestock fed on the most nutritious spring grasses produce delicious meat and dairy products. In most areas of the United States, local harvests peak in the warmest months, just as the school year draws to a close. Luckily for local farmers and kids that participate in school meal programs, an increasing number of sites operating USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) are capitalizing on the many opportunities that summer brings to offer fresh, local foods and outdoor activities that help children develop healthy habits. (USDA FTS Program, 2015).
Check out the new Farm to Summer page on the USDA website.
The Farm to Summer Fact Sheet provides tips for incorporating local foods and agriculture-based activities into summer meal programs.
USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) Toolkit features material on incorporating local foods and related activities into summer meals programs. Whether you’re a state or local agency, nonprofit partner, school district, or producer/provider, you’ll find helpful hints here on ways to continue farm to school activity while school is out.
Thanks to the USDA FTS May 2015 e-newsletter for all this great information!