October is National Farm to School Month! Join us and thousands of schools, early care and education sites, farms, communities and organizations across the country as we celebrate food education, school gardens and lunch tray’s filled with healthy, local ingredients.
On Monday, October 29th, make your plate SC grown. Have a taste test with your school or child care center using Certified SC produce. Post a photo with the hashtag #CertifiedSCplate on Facebook or Instagram and be entered to win some Farm to School prizes.
A taste test is a small sample of produce given to children and teachers to introduce them to a new food. Taste tests provide children with an opportunity to try new foods without creating a lot of food waste. It is a great way to introduce Certified South Carolina fruits and vegetables! Be sure your produce is locally grown and in-season to offer the best experience. Some examples of in-season produce include apples, beets, broccoli, butter beans, cucumbers, green onions, leeks, leafy greens, tomatoes and so much more. Visit the Certified SC website or Farmers Market maps to find local produce.
Sign up here to show how you are participating in Make Your Plate SC Grown and the first 300 participants to sign up will be mailed a packet of stickers and seeds to help celebrate Farm to School month.
Need more resources?
For even more ideas and resources to celebrate, visit the National Farm to School Networks Page.
Here is how we celebrated last year! In 2017 over 13 schools or districts signed up to participate in Make your Plate SC Grown Day to celebrate National Farm to School Month, which means almost 3,000 students tasted South Carolina grown products last October! Do you think we can “beet” those numbers this year?
Briggs Elementary served a delicious meal to students thanks to donations from Carolina Heritage Pork and McCall Farms and the dedication of teacher Mr. Jeff Murrie! Their plates included local pork chops, vegetables, and scratch made biscuits with South Carolina Grown honey.
Tiger Corner Farms and Dorchester School District 2 hosted a Container Farm to School Launch Party at Ashley Ridge High School! The event included salads and smoothies made from locally grown lettuces, tours of the container farms, and interactive educational activities for the students. Schools in Dorchester District 2 will be purchasing local lettuce from Tiger Corners Farms throughout the school year to serve in cafeteria salad bars and on sandwiches.
A grilled local produce station was set up for Chartwells K12 and Spartanburg County School District Three’s Grilling from the Garden celebration held at Middle School of Pacolet. They offered grilled apples, chicken, zucchini, squash, cabbage, and sweet potatoes!
SC Department of Agriculture
The South Carolina Department of Agriculture hosted a taste test using SC grown products and palmetto pick recipes. Employees, including Commissioner Weathers, filled their plates with local products from Titan Farms, WP Rawl, McLeod Farms, and Split Creek Dairy.
More Ways to Celebrate!
Farm to School Month is a time to celebrate connections happening all over the country between schools and local food! Whether you are a food service professional, a farmer, a teacher or a food-loving family, there are plenty of ways to celebrate National Farm to School Month! Be sure to follow @SCfarmtoschool on social media and sign up for the monthly newsletter for news, funding, opportunities and up to date information on Farm to School in your state!
- Plan nutrition education activities promoting the benefits of eating healthy and local
- Use the South Carolina Farm to School lending library for additional classroom books.
- Start a garden! Use garden-based curriculums to bring the classroom outside.
- Create a “gardens needs list” to distribute to parents and teachers
- Organize a farm field trip
- Have children help out in the kitchen cooking an easy recipe
- More kid friendly recipes: Produce for Kids
- Have a grocery store scavenger hunt.
- Play AgBingo!
- Visit a local farmers market
- Volunteer or donate to your school’s garden
Farmers and Producers
- Email Farm to Institution about creating a Farmer Profile
- Ask your local school about conducting a classroom session
- Become a classroom pen pal or invite a class for a field trip
Food Service Directors
- Serve recipes with South Carolina produce
- More recipe inspiration : The Lunch Box
- Promote healthy and local foods in the cafeteria
- Participate in Make Your Plate SC Grown!
- Create a salad bar in your cafeteria
- Participate in the Palmetto Pick of the Month program
Here are some more ways to can connect with the National Farm to School Month campaign:
- Visit the NFSN website: farmtoschool.org
- #F2SMonth and #scfarmtoschool – Use these hashtags in your social media messages
- Follow National Farm to School Network on Facebook
- Follow SC Farm to School on Facebook and Instagram