Farm to School Resources for Earth Day

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Author: Sustain Ontario

Posted: April 22, 2021

Categories: Edible Education Network / Good Food Ideas for Kids / News from Sustain Members / School Food News / Schools

In celebration of Earth Day, Farm to Cafeteria Canada (F2CC) shared some great resources and stories on their blog, showing how every day is Earth Day for farm to school supporters.

After all, we know that schools are a powerful space to support our environment and food system, and we’ve seen this power firsthand through farm to school programs.

Check out F2CC’s Healthy People Healthy Planet Resource List, which offers videos, toolkits, and hands-on activities. Many of the resources outline activities that can be done in the classroom, at home, or in the community. While some are developed with specific audiences or age groups in mind, many of them are informative for all ages.

In their blog posts, you’ll find many stories showcasing how farm to school initiatives can support the environment.

For instance, Nobel Public School in Ontario began their farm to school journey with an Ontario Ecoschool initiative that looked at their school’s environmental impact, which led them to apply for a farm to school grant to build a sustainable salad bar. In addition to purchasing a salad bar unit with their grant, they were able to buy reusable dishes to reduce waste, increase access to healthy local food, and collaborate with community partners to increase community engagement. Their story explains how the grant was a jumping off point for what has evolved into a complete food cycle enterprise, with school gardens, aeroponic tower gardens and a vermicomposting program.

F2CC’s recently-released 9-minute video centred around Primrose Elementary also illustrates how the Farm to School Approach supports student nutrition and learning, as well as the environment.

Ultimately, farm to school gets students eating, cooking, growing, thinking about and embracing healthy local food, which supports the health of individuals as well as the health of the planet — whether it’s through planting new gardens and caring for the land, purchasing and consuming locally-grown food, and/or growing eco-conscious attitudes from a young age.

In fact, the Farm to School: Canada Digs In! report showed that 95% of schools involved in these programs said that students “were more aware of and had greater knowledge about gardening, agriculture, and the environment.”

F2CC’s Farm to School Benefits Sheet also underscores how farm to school initiatives foster environmental stewardship among students and the school community, listing these environmental outcomes:

Kudos to all farm to school champions who treat every day like Earth Day!