Fresh News

Read in the Herald that Legislators in Olympia yesterday passed a bill to better connect schools with local farms. Currently schools are required to go through regional and national distributors to get produce. The Local Farms Healthy Kids bill appropriates $1.5 million towards cutting out the middle man, getting food straight from farms into the cafeteria and benefiting both local farms and kids. Yay!

I just found out this week that Growing Washington, a local nonprofit, already delivers local food to 7 nearby schools through their pilot Farm to Cafeteria program. Kids are also learning about local and regional farms and food systems. Cool beans, man. I expect we’ll see much more of this in the coming years, especially with state support.

This week is nutrition week at school, so the boy has a project where he is tracking all his food intake for five days. Dang, no doughnuts for dinner this week. A local orchard (probably Bellewood acres) came in to the school and did an apple taste test with the kids.
The winner: Fuji
The loser (duh): Red Delicious.


4 Responses to “Fresh News”

  1. 1 Cherie March 13, 2008 at 3:06 pm

    This is my dream come true! It all makes so much sense. Get the kids invoved and aware of their food, what it is, and where it comes from? If they can be involved in the growing process, they will enjoy the food so much more.
    This is the future, as it was in the past.
    You got it beatgrl!

  2. 2 Mr. Cheeseburger 9000 March 17, 2008 at 5:46 am

    This is very good news, beatgrl. It’s good when people (not just kids!) know where the food really comes from. I’m not a vegetarian, but I’m sure there’d be a few less meateaters if people actually knew where the food was coming from.

    On another note, and perhaps pessimistically, I do hope that the program simply does not focus on the fact that a farm is “local,” but also that they are also “natural” (the legal definition of “natural,” which is a lot different than “organic”). I remember back in the 80s (before your time???), when soy products were touted as being from “local” farms. Little did we know, these soy farms were anything but “local,” but actually a conglomerate of big business bent on duping all of us into thinking soy milk is truly “natural.” Anyway, sorry for my prolific use of “quotes.” I often get carried away . . .

  3. 3 beatgrl March 17, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Right, every farm is local to somebody. I think the “local” aspect gives food consumers a chance to visit the farms and talk to the farmers if they choose. Many of the Whatcom County farms that sell to the co-op are certified organic but not all. Some use organic practices but have not been certified, some use integrative pest management, etc.

    I bought an organic onion at the store recently that had a sticker on it with the name of the farm. I googled it and it turned out this particular place was a actually a giant cattle feedlot in California that must have had an industrial scale “organic” farm nearby as well.

  4. 4 DCup March 20, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    It’s a step in the right direction and I love the idea of nutrition week.

    I wish I had the energy, time and space to grow all of our food.

    Even the donuts we eat for dinner!

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