February 2019
Farm Fresh Spotlight Story

TDA is Now Accepting Applications for the Texas Farm Fresh Jump with Jill 2019 Live Tour!
 
Jump with Jill  is back and Ready to Rock! As part of the Texas Farm Fresh Initiative, TDA is offering free nutrition education assemblies to select elementary school campuses in Texas.  Click here  to access the application. Applications will be accepted through March 27, 2019.

Assemblies will take place in September and October 2019, at schools primarily in Northwest Texas education service center (ESC) regions 9, 14, 16 and 17. All contracting entities (CEs) participating in the National School Lunch Program are encouraged to apply for this opportunity, regardless of region. Applications will be cataloged and reviewed for future tours.
 
To learn more about Jump with Jill,  watch this short video , visit the Farm Fresh Live Web page at  www.SquareMeals.org/FarmFreshTour , or contact    FarmFresh@TexasAgriculture.gov.




Farm to School Spotlight
Farm Fresh Fridays
Farm to School Spotlight

School Grants for Healthy Kids

Take Action for Healthy Kids (TAHK) is offering several grants to schools to create healthier campus environments. Since2009, TAHK has provided $8.7 million in grants to help schools  accomplish their student wellness goals.


Game On Grants
Build school gardens or host taste tests with Game On grants! Game On grants provide funding and resources for schools to improve or introduce new nutrition and physical activity programs. These grants are for $1,000.

School Breakfast Grant
Introduce a school breakfast program with grants of $1,000, $2,000, or $3,000. Whether its breakfast in the classroom, grab-and-go, or another program, this grant helps students start their day with a healthy school breakfast.

Parent-Led Grants
Parents can apply for a $1,000 parent-led school grant that will provide funds and resources they can use to revamp or introduce fitness or nutrition programs such as school gardens!

National School Lunch Program Farm Fresh Initiative Survey Closes March 15.

The Texas Department of Agriculture is currently collecting information regarding participation in the Farm Fresh Initiative, also known as Farm to School in Texas.
Thank you for your taking the time to provide your feedback. The deadline to complete the survey is March 18, 2019.




Farm to Child Care Spotlight
Eat Local. Teach Local.  Be Social.

March 1 kicked off the first statewide Farm Fresh Challenge for participants of the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). The CACFP Farm Fresh Challenge is a month-long effort encouraging providers to serve more local foods, teach children and older adults about the importance of Texas agriculture, and share this message with families and community members.
For more information, visit  Squaremeals.org/FarmFreshChallengeCACFP .


TDA E3E Grant Now Open

Deadline to Submit Application: May 2, 2019

The Establishing the 3E's program grant is now open. This grant incentivizes the creation of new nutrition education programs in any child care institution of community organization. This program is geared toward children aged 3-5 and is a competitive grant. This program encourages proper nutrition education at an early age to help children and their parents develop healthy habits. Providers will use this grant to build gardens, connect to local agriculturalists or take participating children on field trips.

Find out more information at  TexasAgriculture.gov 

Farm to Summer Spotlight
Eat Local. Teach Local.  Be Social.

TDA is bringing the 2nd annual  Summer Farm Fresh Challenge to participants of the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option (SSO) statewide! The challenge will occur June 10-21, 2019. Pledge your participation in the Summer Farm Fresh Challenge by May 24th to receive supportive materials such as buttons and stickers. The Summer Farm Fresh Challenge encourages summer meal programs to serve more local foods, teach children about the importance of Texas agriculture, and share this message with families and community members.
SFSP and SSO contracting entities (CEs) interested in participating in this exciting challenge can register at Squaremeals.org/FarmFreshChallengeSFSP .

Producer Spotlight
Upcoming Events for Farm Fresh Network Members

Join us for another great expo opportunity at the Business of Numbers and Nutrition Conference in Austin, TX. 
When: Tuesday, June 11, 7:00-5:30 PM
Where: AT&T Conference Center, 1900 University Ave, Austin, TX 78705

Lunch will be provided to all participating Expo attendees

Thanks to your feedback from past events our team has the opportunity to host a learning session with farmers and child nutrition directors. Look out for our request for session speakers and topics in the coming weeks. 

This event opportunity is available to the first 20 companies that register. Click here to register today!


Welcome to the Farm Fresh Network!
Two Texas agriculture businesses recently joined the TDA Farm Fresh Network -
Dash of Masala and D 4 Farms.

Dash of Masala's Sassy Lassi "on-the-go" yogurt drinks are made  in Taylor. Owner, Jaya Shrivastava is interested in providing these products to Texas schools and child care centers.

D 4 Farm owner, Dora Cavazos, specializes in growing broccoli, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach and tomatoes. These products are now available to schools and child care centers near Weslaco.
Visit Squaremeals.org/FarmFreshNetwork for more information about TDA's Farm Fresh Network.


Contact TDA
Emilee Case
Coordinator for Farm Fresh Projects

Beatrice Watson
Farm Fresh Specialist

Email us or call
(877) TEX-MEAL
Connect with Others
Texas Statewide Network
This LinkedIn Group is an online network connecting schools, child and adult care centers, producers, support organizations and community members with important information about expanding local food efforts in Texas.
 
Join Today!

Texas Farm Fresh Network
Use this tool to connect with Texas food companies that currently sell or are interested in selling to schools, child care centers and summer meal programs. Company listings include contact information, product availability and distribution radius.
Funding Opportunities
Financial support from organizations may help establish or advance local Farm Fresh initiatives.
 
Go here  for a list of opportunities from TDA, USDA and other organizations.