Farm to School
Our Farm to School program is a collaboration catalyst between Food Service Professionals, Local Farms, and Food Hubs to design seasonally appropriate menus, coordinate transportation and delivery, identify school processing needs, and implement Geographic Preference Bids to stimulate local purchasing. While working to support our local food system, we empower students in the cafeteria, classroom, and their communities.
What is NY Thursday?
NY Thursday is a once per month meal that highlights food produced in NY State. NY Thursdays often feature new recipes that students have taste tested and provided feedback on before making it onto the menu.
Who is involved?
Our partners include Broome-Tioga BOCES Food Service, Delaware-Chenango-Madison-Otsego (DCMO) BOCES Food Service, 26 school districts, Food Bank of the Southern Tier, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Broome County, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tioga County, participating farms, hubs, and process, the NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, and Farm to Institution New York State. This list continues to adapt, so please reach out if you are interested in becoming a part of our work!
How do we do it?
The Food and Health Network provides programming support, communications, and project coordination in the following areas:
- Procurement: farm, food-hub, and processor outreach, identifying available products, assisting producers and schools with geographic preference bids.
- Processing: identifying school processing needs and solutions both in and outside of school kitchens.
- Transportation: coordinating transportation logistics and identifying innovative solutions.
- Promotion & Education: conducting taste tests to gauge student preferences and introduce new local foods. Developing promotional materials to raise farm to school awareness and involve staff and students. Linking education in the classroom and cafeteria.
- Creating School Community Food Systems: catalyzing collaborations in local communities to help support and celebrate local agriculture and healthy eating.
How to Get Involved
Are you a farmer, food hub, processor, or distributor interested in selling to schools?
Districts in Broome, Tioga, Delaware, Chenango, Madison, and Otsego Counties are looking for fresh and value-added products, including fruit, vegetables, meat, and dairy, to use in school lunches.
Are you a school that wants to start a Farm to School program?
Contact us and let us know who you are, where you are from, and what products you might be interested in selling to schools. We’ll follow up as soon as you can and work together to see if we can make it happen!