“Florida Crunch” Event in Celebration of National Farm to School Month

“Florida Crunch” Event in Celebration of National Farm to School Month
Posted on 10/21/2019
Florida Produce, Green Beans, Strawberries, tomatoes

Students at Edgewood Academy will celebrate National Farm to School Month on October 24th by participating in the annual Florida Crunch. Students will learn about Florida agriculture and the benefits of consuming local fruits and vegetables. The event will include a taste test with all students in the cafeteria tasting peppers simultaneously during the big “1, 2, 3, CRUNCH!”

“We are very excited about the upcoming Crunch Event as it is a great way to engage students about fresh, local produce. We are constantly working on expanding our school garden and nutrition education efforts and the Crunch Event is a great way to bring students together to try new things and learn about the importance of fresh vegetables,” said Lauren Couchois, Food and Nutrition Services Director for The School District of Lee County.

National Farm to School Month occurs each October to highlight the importance of farm to school programs such as school gardens, nutrition education, and the sourcing of local products for school lunches. These programs help to improve child nutrition, support local economies, and educate children about the origins of their food.

“The Florida Crunch is a great example of how we are working to connect communities with healthy, local food options,” said Tiffany Torres, Food Systems Specialist with UF/IFAS Extension FNP. “Farm to school activities empower students to make informed decisions about their food while strengthening the local economy and building community relationships.”

Produce samples for the children are provided with support from the district’s Food and Nutrition Services Department, and Oakes Farms in Collier County.

The Florida Crunch is held in partnership with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension Family Nutrition Program (FNP), and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS).

The UF/IFAS Extension Family Nutrition Program (FNP) teaches people in Florida with limited-resource how to eat healthy on a budget and get physically active to reduce the risk of obesity and chronic disease. FNP also offers free trainings and workshops to those who serve people with limited resources, and who are interested in making healthy changes in their organization or community. FNP is funded by the USDA Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).