Farm to School
Farm to School
The nutrition team at the Red Clay Consolidated School District continuously researches and implements new ways to keep school lunch menus healthy and exciting. According to an article published on health.com, students who lack proper nutrition have a harder time focusing in school. Nutrition works with local farmers to ensure that students are receiving healthy and fresh produce every day.
Fifer Orchards, locally owned fourth generation family of farmers, is one the biggest vendors for Red Clay Nutrition. Fifer has been in Delaware since 1919. All fruits and vegetable are Non-GMO and Fifer prides itself on being a G.A.P certified farm. G.A.P is the internally recognized standard for farming. Another benefit of utilizing local Delaware farms is the decreased “footprint,” and naturally fresh produce.
In addition to the decreased footprints, a larger percentage of produce is ordered and served in season. Apples, carrots, watermelon and corn are locally fresh in the summer and fall, while spinach, strawberries and asparagus are springtime favorites. “We find that when kids try produce at home they are more likely to eat it at school. Additionally it is our goal that this will work in reverse as well,” stated Nutrition Specialist Jessica Farrand. There is a general assumption that since the implementation of new requirements in 2012 students appear more likely to eat healthy. Red Clay Nutrition educates students and staff about the seasonality of produce.
Utilizing local farmers to provide the necessary fruits and vegetables daily has proven to beneficial to all. Local fresh produce is served to students from a family owned Delaware business that further employs more Delawareans.