Farm-to-School

Working with Local Farms

TCAPS Food & Nutrition Services continues to work with local farms to provide fresh, tasty, and healthy foods to all students in the district.

2017-2018 Farm to School Projects Summary

Courtade Elementary School 

2 Healthy Snack Taste Tests

radish with hummus taste test posterBoth took place in the cafeteria & all students tasted snacks during their lunch period
 

Apples/Pears/Cantaloupe with low-fat greek yogurt dip and Radishes with hummus
 

Students voted Tried It-Liked It-Loved It
 

 

Family Cooking Class

Courtade students participate in a Farm to School cooking classAfter school event

Parents worked with Chef Adam McMarlin to learn how to break down a chicken while students taste tested local root vegetables

Each family went home with the ingredients/recipes to make the meal themselves

Co-convened with Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities, Taste the Local Difference

The Courtade cooking class was featured on a External Link9&10 News “Wellness Wednesdays” segment.

Westwoods Elementary School

Family Cookinng Class

westwoods students participated in cooking classAfter school event, held in the Family-Consumer Science classrooms at West Middle School

Parents worked with Chef Adam McMarlin to learn how to break down a chicken while students taste tested local root vegetables

Each family went home with the ingredients/recipes to make the meal themselves

Co-convened with Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities, Taste the Local Difference

Pop-Up Farmers Market

westwoods students looking at lettuce at farmer's marketOne-time, school-based farmers market, held on the school lawn

Six vendors with local spring produce and value-added products

Teachers received vouchers to use to purchase produce for their classrooms

Most farmers allowed students to test test their offerings (pea shoots, jam, etc)

Co-convened with Taste the Local Difference

Central Grade School

Two Family Cooking Classes

central grade school students in cooking classAfter school event

Parents worked with Chef Adam McMarlin to learn how to break down a chicken while students taste tested local root vegetables

Each family went home with the ingredients/recipes to make the meal themselves

Co-convened with Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities, Taste the Local Difference

School Garden Revitalization and Lessons

central grade school student planting with three sistersPartnered with three classrooms - one each of 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade

Facilitated three lessons with each classroom that incorporated garden work time with curriculum connections (math, science, social studies)

Partnered with TCAPS and the Grand Traverse Band to have GT Band members present to students about the legend of the three sisters and help the students plant their own three sisters garden (External LinkRecord-Eagle Article about the partnership)

Coordinated with Master Gardeners, parents, and community members to ensure summer garden care  

More Information About Farm to School

Last year, TCAPS planned more hot vegetables in our school meals in addition to providing daily salad bars to continue to increase local produce consumption in the schools. See the photo gallery below of local farmers who we purchase product from. External LinkFoodCorps, in conjunction with TBAISD, is working to develop classroom videos showing External LinkFoodCorps’ daily classroom lessons. They hope that these videos will allow more schools to incorporate the FoodCorps programs into their curriculum. We are working with the FoodCorps instructors to come up with recipes for future produce that we would like to introduce into our meals and that they can include in their lessons. TCAPS is also working hard to add more community businesses that we partner with to increase consumption of other local products. We recently worked with External LinkStone House Bread to increase our fresh artisan bread choices for this school year in our secondary schools which now feature Friday Panini day.

TCAPS is proud to be partnering with External LinkGoodwill Industries. Last year, the chefs at Goodwill Industries created a marinara sauce for TCAPS using local tomatoes. TCAPS students taste-tested the sauce and gave it their approval. Goodwill Industries roast and freeze local tomatoes, then make the district’s marinara on an as needed basis and deliver it to our schools. In addition to the marinara, Goodwill Industries also bakes breakfast muffins for TCAPS using frozen, local blueberries. They also look to source Michigan whole grain flour and sugar to use in the muffins.

External LinkCherry Capital Foods of Traverse City continues to supply locally grown honey, tomatoes, celery, cucumbers, watermelon, broccoli, onions, blueberries, strawberries, green peppers, zucchini, squash, and frozen cherries while supplies last. TCAPS is currently purchasing some of our produce from Mi Farms Co-op which is located in Leelanau County. Lastly, springtime brings us asparagus from the External LinkNorkonk Farm in Empire.

We have also been working with Brandon Seng of Goodwill Food Programs and the Farm to Freezer initiative. This program will help expand local food offerings throughout the year as Video Documentshowcased in the video of Brandon’s efforts in collaboration with Calvin Lutz Farms.

TCAPS will also be working to expand its Farm-to-School and local purchasing programs into concessions and catering operations this school year.

Ten Cent Program to Continue at TCAPS: School Meals Include More Local Fruit & Vegetables

This year is a very exciting year for us. For the last three years, TCAPS has piloted a local fruit and vegetable program where the district has received 10 cents per meal for each meal that includes local fruits or vegetables. This program was funded through The Groundworks Center and TBAISD who used money from local donations.

Last year, we asked Senator Booher to write a bill that would help fund/expand the program. Thanks to his efforts, $250,000 in state appropriations was included in this year's final State Aid budget to help fund this program through a competitive grant process. TCAPS applied for the grant and will receive $48,500 to spend on Michigan fruits and vegetables.

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