Growing Community Now in partnership with the Taos Municipal Schools Student Nutrition Program has been meeting once a month with a group of interested community leaders and members to create a Farm to School Action Committee in order to create a plan to fill students plates with farm fresh foods as well as revitalize our local agriculture. We have also received support from the LOR Foundation, Taos Community Foundation, and the Thornburg Foundation School Zone Grant for planning to help facilitate the introduction of local food to the district. We are growing larger at every meeting. So far our group includes:
The meetings have been successful at establishing what the Student Nutrition Program cafeteria staff needs are for making the changes to the plate including what equipment is needed and how much local food needs to be grown in order to fulfill the yearly purchase volume as well as how best to raise support among cafeteria staff, interested community members, farmers and ranchers, It was established that farmers and ranchers can and have created a Taos Farmers Cooperative to grow food for the district. The Taos Farmers Farm to School Co-op is sharing farming and harvesting equipment to successfully answer the Municipal Schools call for local produce through RFP's.
Our enthusiasm is high for fresh local foods! The Student Nutrition Program has included fresh New Mexico tomatoes and lettuce on the salad bar and New Mexico grown scratch-cooked pinto beans! The group will continue to meet and work toward Taos Municipal Schools becoming a Farm to School district. Many thanks to all on this amazing team!!
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