Tawny Cowell, Director of Nutrition and Facilities at Redding School District in California, is focused on providing students with local, sustainable produce through the district’s farm-to-school program. In 2022, they set the goal of growing 50 percent of the district’s lettuce supply. To accomplish this goal, the district decided to purchase 12 Flex Farms and repurpose an unused space at Sequoia Middle School to house their indoor hydroponic farm.
The Flex Farms supply a variety of locally grown organic lettuce to the district’s nutrition program and salad bars. One Flex Farm provides enough lettuce to serve a school of 200 students with a fresh, nutritious salad every day once harvested.
In fact, the district produces enough lettuce each week to support its entire school lunch program across all schools – exceeding the original goal of sourcing 50 percent of their lettuce. Lettuce is also incorporated into other meals and made available on their condiment bars.
What is farm to school?
The USDA defines the term “farm to school” as a variety of activities conducted by child nutrition program administrators that connect students with the source of their food, improve health and education outcomes, promote equity in the food system, and inspire youth toward careers in agriculture.
Read the entire article at Fork Farms