The SC Farm to Institution Program is committed to helping farmers sell to various institutions.
On this page you will find resources to help you sell your SC grown products.
Where are Farm to Institution sales?
• Child Care Centers
• After-school programs
Why Sell to Institutions?
• Demand is LARGE
• Reliable customers
• Opportunity to promote your farm in their cafeteria
(which will lead to MORE sales in the future)
A short interview with Al Williams, a GAP certified farmer and Farm to School supplier!
Tips for Getting Started Selling to Schools and Other Institutions
Prepare for Initial Contact with Institutions
Ask yourself the following questions and create a plan before approaching institutions.
What is your delivery plan?
- Boxes? Bags?
- How often?
- How far?
Is the delivery price built into the sale?
What are the minimum and maximum orders per site?
How will you communicate?
- Ex: phone, email, text, or fax
Consider Important Factors about Institutions
Ask questions, such as the following, when you initially meet with institutions.
What is the size of the delivery?
- How many students/orders?
What are the serving sizes for each item?
Does the site have scratch kitchens?
- Are they able to wash and chop produce?
What are the logistics for delivery?
- Is there a preference for time of day?
- Day of week?
- Do all sites need deliveries?
Possible Questions to Expect from Institutions about Purchasing your Produce or Products
- What is the price of the product(s)?
- How does it come delivered? (Ex: packaging)
- Do you sell value-added products?
How to Start the Conversation: A Food Service Director & Farmer Conversation Guide
From the California Farm to School Program
The SC Farm to Institution Program has sample contract between a local SC farmer and a SC School Food Service Leader. This will serve as a guide and it is most relevant to farmers interested in selling to schools.
Good Agricultural Practices (GAP)
Many schools and other institutions strongly recommend that produce is purchased from farms that are Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certified.
Click here for more information about GAP from the United States Department of Agriculture.
The SC Department of Agriculture offers trainings and on-farm consultations to help you prepare for your audit!
“I enjoy the challenge of keeping up the standard. Once you do it and get into the feel of it, it’s part of everyday life. When I come out in the morning to pull an order, I know what process I have to go through, so I just go ahead and do it and everything works out fine.” –Al Williams, farmer in Latta, SC