October 2017
New Resources! Garden Support from Seed Planting to Harvest Parties
Whether you're thinking about starting a garden or want to refresh your garden this spring, the "Let's Get Growing" series supports schools and child care centers each step of the way.


Plan - Create a plan that ensures ongoing sup port and longevity. Plan includes information about using child nutrition funds to support gardens in schools and child care centers  

Grow   - Develop good safety practices for children learning in the garden. Templates in Grow make creating a safety protocol feasible for any garden program. 

Harvest - Maintain food safety for foods going from the garden to meals and snacks. Make your garden grown products a reliable source of fresh, local produce by creating and following a personalized food safety protocol using the steps provided in Harvest

Connect - Promote your garden program and connect to external stakeholders using social media, parent flyer templates and press releases. No good garden story should be left untold!

Farm to School Spotlight
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Fiscal Year 2018 Farm to School Grant Program Request for Applications (RFA) has been released. This grant program awards up to $5 million annually in competitive grant funding to support efforts that improve access to local foods in schools. New for 2018, there are only three categories of grant funds available: planning, implementation and training. Award amounts range from $20,000 - $100,000.
Helpful resources for the Farm to School RFA include the following:
Annie's Grants for Gardens

At Annie's, they believe that showing future generations how sustainable food is grown can change lives. Connecting kids to gardens helps them to start thinking more holistically about their food, their communities, and the planet. Want a garden? Apply for the Annie's grant today! Applications are due November 11, 2017 3:00 PM PST.
Farm to Child Care Spotlight
Healthy Eating Starts Early: Growing Healthy Kids with CACFP and Farm to Early Childhood Education
The National CACFP Sponsors Association (NCA) believes that healthy eating starts early. Read their full profile in the National Farm to School Network Blog to see how they support providers nationwide, including Texas, to connect program participants back to local foods through farm to child care. Also, make sure to check out the new
Child Nutrition Today  section of the National CACFP Sponsors Association web page to find kid-friendly, CACFP creditable recipes.

Contact TDA
Emilee Case
Coordinator for Farm Fresh Projects

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.