orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

Local News

March 28, 2013

Connecting schools with local agriculture

AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Department of Agriculture today unveiled the new Farm to School Web page to increase the amount of locally grown products featured in Texas school meals while also expanding business opportunities for Texas agricultural producers. The Web page, SquareMeals.org/FarmtoSchool, also provides school nutrition professionals with resources for planning meals around seasonally available local foods, and offers agricultural producers the information needed to sell their products directly to schools.

“Farm to School efforts help increase the quality of fresh foods in our schools,” Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples said. “Expanding the amount of Texas products in our schools is good health policy, good family policy and good economic policy.”

Agricultural producers and school nutrition professionals are encouraged to visit SquareMeals.org/FarmtoSchool to learn more about how they can work together. Teachers and parents can access other valuable information such as how to use seasonally available produce in meals, plan a campus garden or bring agricultural presentations to the classroom.

Produce available for the Orange County and surrounding areas can be found under Coastal Bend Area at the website. A chart shows cabbage, field peas, green onions, greens, herbs, and zucchini available locally for Orange during the month of April.

TDA’s Farm to School initiative focuses on building strong relationships between schools and agricultural producers, while positively connecting students to the food they eat. For more information, contact the Texas Department of Agriculture at (877) TEX-MEAL or visit SquareMeals.org/FarmtoSchool.

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