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Farm to School Programing

Farm to School Programing

Farm to School Program - This program puts Philadelphia at the forefront of the national farm to school movement by connecting select schools with local farmers to bring fresh local fruits and vegetables into the schools. Click on the link to learn more. http://www.farmtoschool.org/

Beginning in 2009, and entering its third full year this fall, the School District of Philadelphia will be purchasing fresh, healthy, locally grown fruits and vegetables for use in schools meals. Over the past several years, the program has grown from 5 cafeterias to 33 cafeterias, with a broad reach across the City of Philadelphia.

Food service trainings and farm tours, youth engagement, marketing, and good food messaging have been a part of this program throughout its implementation. In this past school year, over 60,000 lb of locally grown produce was served to students across the District. These local fresh fruits and vegetables were purchased by the School District of Philadelphia through Kegel's Produce.



Food Services Division Wins USDA Grant

USDA Farm to School Grant Award Winner

The School District of Philadelphia Eat Fresh Here project is freezing local seasonal produce during the summer months so that it can be used during the winter months when such produce is not locally available. Produce will be processed and frozen at Saul Agriculture HS and maintained in freezers in two to three different school locations. The first year of the project will be a pilot focused on blueberries for two schools. Having a pilot program in the first year will allow the District to address any challenges that arise in areas such as, but not limited to, freezing, distribution, taste testing and recipe development. Blueberries will be used in breakfast items such as yogurt, baked goods and oatmeal. In the second year, we plan on freezing two products, blueberries and Pesto. The program will be introduced to an additional five schools for a total of seven participating schools. The Division of Food Services thanks Henry Got Crops, Eat.Right.Now, The Food Trust and the Office of Grants Development for their support and collorboration on this grant oppertunity.
 
 

Season Extension

 

Did you know that over summer 2015 many students, staff and community partners worked together to develop a freezing and preservation method for fresh blueberries and collard greens? This processing allows these nutrient-dense goodies to be enjoyed throughout school year 2015-2016. Extending the season of blueberries and collard greens becomes especially important during colder months when the produce otherwise would not be in season!

Interested in the season extension processing? Check out how the students and staff got involved by watching the videos below!

Operation Collard Greens

Operation Blueberries

 

Farm Tour to Longview Farm

    

 

As part of the Farm to School program, students from Saul Agricultural and Northeast High Schools, joined by staff from The School District of Philadelphia and Food Trust, took a tour of Greener Partners’ Longview Farm in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, on June 3rd. Longview Farm is an organic farm that sits on 120 acres of preserved farmland and grows all of its produce using organic and sustainable farming practices. On the farm tour, students and staff learned all about these farming practices and the diverse array of organic produce that is grown at Longview. Students and staff also toured their market and education gardens, met their chickens and goats and learned about their contribution to the farm, and helped pick strawberries to bring to market. The farm tour presented the students with a unique opportunity to connect with local farmers, and was a tremendous educational experience for everyone who attended!