Secondary menu

Farm To School

Videos and Webinars

Last Modified: 10/21/2014

Healthy Habits Take Root Video Series

In celebration of National Farm to School Month, we are excited to announce a five-part video series featuring testimonials from more than 30 USDA Farm to School grantees. From Maine to Alaska, USDA supports farm to school programs all across the country. School districts - large, small, urban and rural - are serving local products and teaching students where their food comes from. The videos highlight the many ways grantees are bringing the farm to school. Be on the lookout as we share a new video each week throughout October. 

Getting Kids Excited about Healthful, Local Foods 

In this video, the fourth in our five-part series, farm to school practitioners from across the country talk about how they get kids excited about eating healthful, local foods. From taste tests, to farm visits, to culinary competitions, there are lots of ways to help children engage with, and get excited about, local products!

Getting Kids Excited about Healthful, Local Foods

Going Local 

In this video, the third in our five-part series, farm to school practitioners from across the country talk about which local foods they are serving to students, the diverse sources of these foods, and how they are purchasing local in accordance with regulations.

Going Local

Getting Started with Farm to School 

In this video, the second in our five-part series, farm to school practitioners from across the country talk about how they started their programs and give recommendations for others who are just digging in.

Farm to School Impacts

In this video, the first in our five-part series, farm to school practitioners from across the country talk about the impacts their programs are having on students, farmers, the environment, and the local economy.

Teaser - Farm to School: Kids Love It!

Archived Webinars

Finding, Buying and Serving Local Foods Webinar Series

From January through June, 2014, the USDA Farm to School Program hosted two webinars each month to showcase the variety of ways school districts can purchase local foods. See below for archived recordings and corresponding resources for each of the webinars. 

  1. Introduction to Procurement
  2. Conducting a Local Procurement Baseline Assessment
  3. Finding Local Producers
  4. Using the Informal Procurement Method 
  5. Using Specifications to Target Local Products 
  6. Working with Distributors
  7. Using a Forward Contract 
  8. Introduction to Geographic Preference
  9. Using Geographic Preference 
  10. Using USDA Foods as Resource to Purchase Local 
  11. Using DoD Fresh to Purchase Local 
  12. Tying It All Together and Digging In 

Tying It All Together and Digging In, June 26, 2014

During the last webinar in the twelve-part series, the USDA Farm to School Program offers a speedy recap of the variety of ways districts can purchase local foods, and talks through an example of how one district is tying it all together with a comprehensive local purchasing program. Deborah Kane, the National Director of USDA’s Farm to School Program, wraps up the webinar by showing us how local procurement fits into the larger farm to school picture and shares several resources that are available to help you meet your local purchasing goals. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using DoD Fresh to Purchase Local, June 12, 2014

In this webinar recorded on June 12, we focus on the Department of Defense Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. The webinar begins with an overview of how the program works and a few examples of states and districts that are augmenting their farm to school efforts with produce ordered through DoD Fresh. Then, the Texas Department of Agriculture shares how they have successfully worked with three DoD Fresh vendors to create a Texas Farm to School Calendar and offer Texas-grown products throughout the year. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using USDA Foods as Resource to Purchase Local, May 22, 2014

On this webinar recorded on May 22, the USDA Farm to School Team turns its attention to USDA Foods. We discuss the history of the program and four ways USDA Foods can support districts in their local purchasing efforts. The Vermont Agency of Education shares how they have integrated USDA Foods into their local purchasing efforts. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using Geographic Preference, May 8, 2014

This webinar recorded on May 8, 2014 offers an in-depth look at how three districts are using geographic preference. We review some geographic preference basics, hear from the farm to school coordinator at Fayetteville Public Schools in Arkansas and discuss two other real-life examples of schools using geographic preference. 
You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Introduction to Geographic Preference, April 24, 2014

During this webinar, we introduce the geographic preference option, explain when it can be used, discuss what unprocessed means and offer a few examples for how a school might use geographic preference. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using a Forward Contract, April 10, 2014

In this webinar, USDA’s Farm to School Team discussed the different ways schools may choose to use a forward contract when purchasing local foods and hear from a practitioner who has successfully used forward contracts to buy local products. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Working with Distributors, March 27, 2014

In this webinar, USDA’s Farm to School Team discusses how schools can purchase local products through distributors. A food service director from Tennessee and a farm to school coordinator from Georgia share how they’ve been able to work with distributors to buy local foods. You can watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here  and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using the Specifications, Requirements and Evaluation Criteria to Target Local Products, March 13, 2014

In this webinar, we discuss how schools can purchase local products by using product specifications, vendor requirements and evaluation criteria. For example, schools can require that vendors offer farm visits or origin labeling, or a school might request a variety of product only grown in the nearby region. Watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Using the Informal Procurement Method, February 27, 2014

In this webinar, Christina Conell from USDA's Food and Nutrition Service discusses how schools can purchase local products using the informal method. It can be as easy as schools contacting three (or more!) local producers for price quotes. This session showcases stories and tips from Union Public Schools in Oklahoma and Kalispell Public Schools in Montana. Watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Finding Local Producers, February 13, 2014

In this webinar, Christina Conell from USDA's Food and Nutrition Service discusses the variety of ways schools can connect with local farmers, ranchers, and other food businesses. The webinar covers online connection tools, requests for information, the role of state farm to school coordinators and state departments of agriculture, and USDA resources such as the Farm Service Agency's field offices and Cooperative Extension resources. Guest speakers from the Maryland Department of Agriculture, Michigan State University and a Michigan farm will share their tips for connecting with producers. Watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Conducting a Local Procurement Baseline Assessment, January 23, 2014

In this webinar, Maggie Gosselin from USDA's Food and Nutrition Service discusses ways to define local, determine what local products you are already purchasing, and track local purchases in the future. This session showcases stories and tips from Page County Public Schools in Virginia and Oakland Unified Public Schools in California. Watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with helpful resources here.

Introduction to Procurement, January 9, 2014

In this webinar, Christina Conell and Maggie Gosselin from USDA's Food and Nutrition Service cover basic procurement fundamentals relevant to the Federal Child Nutrition Programs. Topics include informal and formal procurement methods and maintaining competition. This is the first in a series of webinars that will cover more specific topics in local procurement. Watch the recording here. You can also access a PDF of the slides here and a handout with general procurement resources here.

 

Farm to School + Extension Webinar Series

Farm to School + Extension: Webinar #4: Highlighting Innovative Ways Extension Professionals are involved with the USDA Farm to School Grant Program, March 13, 2014

In this webinar, Jason Fischbach from the University of Wisconsin Extension and Seth Urbanowitz from the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension shared their experiences supporting two USDA Farm to School Grant Program projects through local and regional food procurement and school garden based experiential education. You can access a PDF copy of the slides here. Watch the recording here.

Farm to School + Extension: Webinar #3, December 4, 2013

In this webinar, Debra Eschmeyer, FoodCorps Co-Founder, and Rachel Spencer, Arkansas FoodCorps Fellow described FoodCorps’ model of teaching kids about what healthy food is and where it comes from, building and tending school gardens, and bringing high-quality local food into public school cafeterias. Deb and Rachel also showcased how FoodCorps is successfully partnering with Cooperative Extension at the state level in five regions. Additionally, Susan DeBlieck, Extension Educator in Community Food Systems with University of Minnesota Extension, described how University of Minnesota Extension has strategically supported farm to school throughout Minnesota by collaborating with partners to provide training and develop materials. Susan also highlighted Extension staff roles that promote farm to cafeteria work and resources including their online farm to school toolkit. Watch the live recording here.

Farm to School + Extension: Webinar #2, November 20, 2013

In this webinar, Julia Govis from University of Illinois Extension shared information about how she is leading farm to school in Illinois through the development of educational resources and curriculum to support Extension work in its diverse program areas. Morgan Taggart from Ohio State University Extension described how OSU Extension has prioritized involvement in farm to school and how other Extension professionals in urban and suburban areas can be involved with farm to school related activities. Morgan also shared how she is currently involved with farm to school across the Cleveland area through school gardens, local food procurement, and local food and agriculture curriculum development/instruction. Watch the live recording here.

Farm to School + Extension: Webinar #1, September 25, 2013

In this webinar, Emily Jackson of Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project shared outcomes from a tri-state project that examined the roles of Cooperative Extension in farm to school. She was joined by Teresa Wiemerslage from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach who shared how she is supporting local food procurement, school wellness, and youth engagement in Northeast Iowa. Watch the live recording here.

 

USDA Farm to School Grants

Fiscal Year 2015 Farm to School Grant Program

USDA hosted four webinars to assist eligible entities in preparing proposals for the FY 2015 Request for Applications. All webinars were recorded and will available via this webpage within 1-2 weeks of initial viewing. The presentation slides can be found below.

  • Planning Grant Webinar: March 11, 2014
    • See the presentation slides here.
    • Watch the recording here.
  • Implementation Grant Webinar: March 12, 2014
    • See the presentation slides here.
    • Watch the recording here.
  • Support Service Grant Webinar: March 13, 2014
    • See the presentation slides here.
    • Watch the recording here.
  • Conference/Event Grant Webinar: March 14, 2014
    • See the presentation slides here.
    • Watch the recording here.

Trends in Successful USDA Farm to School Grant Applications, December 11, 2012

During the first round of the USDA Farm to School Grant Program, hundreds of applicants across the country competed for a limited amount of funding. To aid applicants in increasing the competitiveness of future submissions, USDA Farm to School personnel summarize trends observed in successful FY 2013 USDA Farm to School Grant applications. Watch the live recording here.

General

Farm to School Census Sneak Peak, September 26, 2013

In this webinar, Deborah Kane, National Director, USDA Farm to School Program previewed the USDA Farm to School Census. The Census was recently completed and surveyed over 13,000 school districts to determine the prevalence of farm to school programs in the United States. Watch the live recording here.

Farm to School and the New Meal Pattern Webinar, November 29, 2012

In this webinar, USDA Farm to School personnel, FNS Child Nutrition Program staff, a food service director from Valley City Public Schools, North Dakota, and a farm to school coordinator from Denver Public Schools address the new meal pattern in general and inclusion of local and regional products in specific. Watch the live recording from our webinar here.

All things Farm to School at USDA, October 16, 2012

In this webinar, Deborah Kane, National Director of USDA’s Farm to School Program, provides a review of USDA’s farm to school activities in fiscal year 2012, discusses early insights from the first round of farm to school grant applications, and shares thoughts regarding fiscal year 2013 priorities. Watch the live recording here.

To receive information and updates about USDA’s Farm to School Program, please sign up for our Farm to School E-letter.