Did you know that institutional purchasing accounts for 2/3rds of the U.S. economy (that’s 10.1 trillion dollars a year)? It’s no wonder that we – Fair Trade Campaigns – are focusing our efforts on building relationships and educating constituents and leaders of institutions. We are excited to celebrate Food Day (October 24th) and Fair Trade Month (October) by helping communities come together in support of sustainable and ethically just food.
The Kids Cook Monday is a campaign that encourages parents and kids to start their weeks off right by making Monday family night. Each week, the campaign provides an easy weeknight recipe and all the tools families will need to enjoy a fun cooking and dining experience on Monday nights. To have The Family Dinner Date Newsletter delivered to your inbox each Friday, sign up here.
It’s that time of year again! School is back in session and as students re-enter the classroom ready to dive into mathematics, science, and language arts, let’s not forget the importance of including education focused on healthy eating as well.
Food Day national partner Wholesome Wave is launching Farm to Table Cycle: A Journey for Change, a grassroots campaign to raise awareness around thriving local food systems. The campaign, a 400 mile solo bicycle and photography journey, champions local and regional food systems, and showcases more than 40 community members and organizations that work diligently and tirelessly to shape our food system into one that is more equitable, more sustainable and more delicious.
Like countless others, my kids’ elementary school has a history of peddling junk food for profit. From bake sales to movie nights to major fundraisers, cookies, candy and other unhealthy stuff has been sold to our children and out in our community—for a good cause, of course. But enlisting kids to sell junk food to friends and families sends the wrong message and undermines nutrition education efforts. We have to stop paying for education by borrowing from our children’s health.
This guest post comes from Ludovica Ferme and Dan Rabens, Regional Managers for the East and West Coasts at Farmigo. We work with schools all over New York, New Jersey, and the Bay Area to connect their communities with the farmers in their region, and raise funds supporting initiatives in healthy eating, school greening efforts, and sustainability.
Schools in the United States are facing a significant challenge. They must stop ignoring the fact that children across the country are suffering from severe health issues, many linked to poor diets both at home and in cafeterias. Then they need to acknowledge that there’s something they can do about it. Schools have the potential to become a dynamic force for change in our lives and the lives of our children. They’re perfectly poised to promote better eating habits and informed decision-making, and ultimately to become a primary resource for families everywhere on healthy living.
At Farmigo, it’s our mission to connect people to their local farmers. We’ve found that partnering with schools (currently in New York, New Jersey, and the San Francisco Bay Area) is a powerful way to foster those connections. Each school we work with is given their own, personalized marketplace where teachers, families, and staff can browse our constantly changing seasonal produce and local artisanal treats. All of the orders are delivered straight to the schools, so parents can easily pick up their kids and farm-fresh groceries at the same time. Even better? We work with our schools to develop fundraisers, where 10% of the weekly sales go straight towards school projects — things like wellness programs, gardens, better water filtration systems, and more. In the last year alone, our schools on both coasts raised nearly $20,000.
America has one of the most productive food systems in the world. Workers at every level, from farmers to grocers, work extremely hard every day to get food from the field to your plate.
But some parts of this system are still lacking, and present injustices to workers on farms and in restaurants, to child and adult consumers, to the environment, and to farm animals. One especially prevalent area of need deals with hunger and food access. Today it is estimated that almost 14.5 percent of households in the U.S. are food insecure.
To find out more, check out this infographic we created as part of Food Day’s focus on food justice. This is just a clip; to download the whole infographic, click here!