Farm to School Month
October is National Farm to School Month, a time to celebrate connections all over the country between schools and local food! Whether you are a foodservice professional, a farmer, a teacher, or a food-loving family, you can celebrate and get involved.
Save the Date for Farm to School Month 2016
Download the postcard above or create your own with these files:
The MN Thursday logo was created by Kollin Leisinger, Minneapolis Public Schools Culinary & Nutrition Services Graphic Artist.
Join the Celebration
Check out the multiple Farm to School Month opportunities below and decide what works for you and your community. Each event includes numerous resources to support your success.
October 6: Minnesota Thursday
Join schools across the state and kick off Minnesota Thursdays with a special Midwest Menu: serve local chicken and an apple, along with a veggie and whole grain of your choice.
Midwest Menu Registration Now Live!
Last year, over half a million students participated in the Midwest Menu event. Register to have your tray counted and to receive promotional materials to support your event: 2016 Midwest Menu Registration Page.
Questions? Contact Vanessa Herald (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Check out past menus and activities from Minneapolis Public Schools here: Minnesota Thursdays.
- Showcase your local items, the farmers who produced the items, and the locations of the farm(s) on a map of Minnesota with this template: MN Thursday Template (103 K PDF).
- Spread the word with this flyer: MN Thursdays Flyer (391 K PDF).
October 13: Great Lakes Great Apple Crunch
Participate in the third annual Great Lakes Great Apple Crunch at noon on Thursday, October 13.
Register Your Crunch Now!
Register for the Great Lakes Great Apple Crunch by September 16 and your school will have a chance to have Minnesota Grown Spokesperson and former Olympian Carrie Tollefson lead your crunch in person! Carrie is a native of Dawson, MN where she won 13 state championships: eight in track and five in cross country. Carrie is a strong advocate of promoting healthy lifestyles that include regular physical activity and healthy local foods.
- Sign up to receive free stickers and a copy of the 2016 Crunch Guide to help you plan, carry out, and share your celebratory crunch: Register for the Great Lakes Great Apple Crunch!
- Find local farms with apples: Minnesota Grown Directory: Farms with Apples
- Get recipes, menu examples, and fun facts for apples: Promoting Apples.
Note from Minnesota Department of Education for participating school food service professionals: Source local apples through the Department of Defense Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (DoD Fresh). Bergin Fruit and Nut Company is the state contracted vendor. Orders must be placed in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Order Receipt System (FFAVORS) to use entitlement dollars. Local is designated in the produce catalog. Contact Bergin Fruit and Nut Company for grower-specific information.
The National Farm to School Network has resources for your school and community, available for free or for sale on their website. Visit their Farm to School Month web page to download and share posters, stickers, a communications toolkit, and blog posts highlighting farm to school work across the country.Need help sourcing local foods? Look no further: Finding Local Foods.
Spread the Word
Here are two ways to get the word out about Farm to School Month.
- Follow the National Farm to School Network on Facebook and Twitter and share their messages.
- Use these hashtags in your social media messages:
Farm to School: Growing Our Future — This 30-minute documentary explores the economic advantages and remaining challenges for businesses, farms, schools, and communities as we work together to improve our children's health and education.
I Dig My Farmer — Institute on Agriculture and Trade Policy — Use this promotional package with customizable materials to feature and celebrate local farmers and their products.