Farm to School Yolo will conduct a second farmer training on Friday, Jan. 24, as part of the program’s goal to increase access to regionally grown specialty crops and their use in school lunches. The Farm to School Yolo initiative, funded by a three-year California Department of Food and Agriculture specialty crop block grant, is achieving its objectives primarily through professional development and educational meetings for food service staff and farmers.
The state grant funds an annual training aimed to educate farmers on the opportunities available in school food service sales. The Jan. 24 training will be held at the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at UC Davis and will focus on building a stronger infrastructure for farm-to-school sales through an up-close look at working private sector models.
Panel discussions will include insight from distributors, aggregators and farmers working with schools in Northern California. The event is co-sponsored by several supporting organizations including Community Alliance with Family Farmers, UCD Center for Nutrition in Schools, Yolo Farm to Fork and the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Farm to Fork office. Farm to School Yolo hopes the training will engage farmers looking for new marketing opportunities.
“Yolo County has all the resources necessary for a successful farm to school movement: an abundance of local farms; motivated school food service directors; and a community that wishes to support the movement,” said Yolo County Agricultural Commissioner John Young. “The next step is to strengthen relationships among our farmers, school food service directors and our community for a sustainable model.”
To sign up for the Jan. 24 farmer training, contact Nicole Sturzenberger, Farm to School outreach coordinator, at [email protected] or 530-666-8154. For more information on Farm to School Yolo, visit www.harvesthubyolo.org/farm-to-school.