Soon after moving into the White House, the First Lady along with local elementary school children planted The Kitchen Garden at the White House, the first garden of its kind on White House grounds since Eleanor Roosevelt’s Victory Garden during World War II.
Weeks earlier, I celebrated the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln by starting the first People’s Garden at USDA Headquarters in Washington D.C. That day, I could only begin to imagine that a movement which began in our nation’s capital would spread to make an impact in communities across America and the world. Read more »
In an effort to counter rising obesity rates among children, one Montana group is looking to a younger generation to take the lead in bringing locally-grown, nutritious food to schools in the area. The Grow Montana coalition, in conjunction with AmeriCorps, is accepting applications from March 25 to April 22 for a team of 11 FoodCorps members who will develop Farm to School programs in Montana’s food deserts. Because many residents in these areas must drive an hour or more to the nearest grocery store, good nutrition is literally out of reach.
As AmeriCorps VISTA members, the FoodCorps team aims to address this problem by connecting schools with farmers and ranchers to serve healthy, locally-grown meals, building and tending school gardens, and educating students about how and why to eat nutritious foods. Read more »
Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food with Bee Keeper Mello. He brought a hive from Aquidneck Island Apiaries (honey is one of the many local ingredients used in Pawtucket’s breakfast and lunches, provided by local farmers)
Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:
After a cold and snowy month of school closings, the sun shone on February 10, just in time to present eight elementary schools in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, with Bronze awards in the HealthierUS School Challenge. Read more »
Opportunities for freshly grown local produce to be served in schools were discussed when school district food service directors attended an informational forum in Pierre, South Dakota last week. They participated with a panel made up of South Dakota food producers, USDA Rural Development, South Dakota State Department of Agriculture, Dakota Rural Action, the state Department of Health, Value Added Agriculture Development Center and South Dakota Buy Fresh-Buy Local representatives.
Farm to School is a program that connects schools (K-12) and local farms with the objectives of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health and nutrition education opportunities, and supporting local and regional farmers. Read more »
Christie Vilsack samples a healthy, made-to-order salad from Von Steuben High School’s revamped cafeteria line.
School nutrition folks in Chicago have been busy. Last May, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and locally-based Healthy Schools Campaign launched the city’s Go for the Gold campaign. The effort seeks to have 100 city schools qualify for USDA’s HealthierUS Challenge gold award. As part of that announcement, CPS revised its food menus and made other changes, as well. Read more »
First-grader Cassidy Stone clears her tray of soy nuts, whole wheat pizza stick, broccoli and jello, saying “the food tastes good.”
As Child Nutrition Director for USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service, one of my top priorities is to improve the nutrition and health of our nation’s children. With the Child Nutrition Act Reauthorization, we have an opportunity to pass legislation that will combat childhood hunger and obesity among schoolchildren by providing schools with the tools and resources needed to help children develop healthier eating habits. Read more »