Hello Farm to Fork Friends, We had a great time celebrating Utah's 3rd annual Harvest Gratitude Day with the kindergarteners at Silver Mesa Elementary in Canyons School District on November 23rd. This year the event was held over Zoom, which gave us the opportunity to show off three different farms. The students met beef steers, pigs, and a milking calf, and saw apples being pressed into cider. They also heard a special harvest message from Governor Herbert. With the outdoor growing season wrapped up, how will you continue to celebrate local food throughout the winter? Don’t forget to tag us in your local meals @utfarm2fork. And if you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift, our friends at Wasatch Community Gardens have Love Local Gift Boxes for sale!
What to Harvest This Month
Did you know Utah has more turkeys than people? This is the perfect month to put Utah-grown turkey on your plate. In addition to sandwiches and wraps, leftover turkey is great is soups, moles, and curries. Pair it with some Utah squash or hearty winter greens.Add some Utah cheese to your holiday menu! We’ve got loads of great cheese producers in this state—check out the producer list on our website to find some who are interested in selling to schools. If a full local cheeseboard isn’t in your budget, try adding some goat cheese crumbles to a salad or topping your tacos with shreds of jalapeno cheddar.
Scratch Cooking Survey Chef Ann Foundation is planning and developing a School Food Fellowship Program that will launch in 2021. This program will be centered on creating the next generation of diverse school food leaders in scratch-cook operations. They need your help and feedback to make this program the best it can be! Please share your thoughts in this 8-minute survey.
Webinars and Trainings
Using Greenhouses in School Gardens This webinar from the School Garden Support Organization Network will offer information and resources for establishing a new project or further activating an existing greenhouse or hoop house. This is a great resource for educators who are exploring ways to incorporate a greenhouse as a hands-on learning environment and/or tool to extend their growing. Learn more and register here.
Farmworkers Are Essential Workers With the recent good news from Pfizer and Moderna, states have begun discussing strategies and priorities for rolling out the COVID vaccines when they become available. It’s important that farmworkers, some of our most vulnerable and essential workers, are at the front of the line for the vaccine. Read more here. Justice for Black Farmers Act What do the large land grant programs in America’s past (such as the Homestead Act) all have in common? They were almost exclusively accessible only to white Americans. These land transfers, along with other racist policies from the USDA that prevented Black farmers from accessing loan programs and other benefits, resulted in a near-complete wipeout of Black farmland ownership in this country. The Justice for Black Farmers Act, sponsored by senators Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) attempts to reverse these damages by funding equitable land access. Read more about the Act and the reasons it’s needed here. If you’re more of an auditory learner, check out this 10-minute discussion on racial discrimination in USDA farm support programs.
Youth Programs Instructors, Youth Garden Project, Moab We are looking for individuals interested in working as an educator in a hands-on, outdoor setting within a variety of our elementary educational programs. In the spring, we host two After-School Programs, lead Garden Classroom Field Trips, and run a weeklong Spring Break Camp—all of which will be facilitated primarily by two instructors. During the summer, four instructors collaborate to implement our nine-week Summer Camp program. Learn more and apply here. If you are hiring on either the farm or fork side of farm to fork, let us know and we’ll share the job posting here!
KidsGardening Youth Garden Grant Any nonprofit organization, public or private school, or youth program in the United States or US Territories planning a new garden program or expanding an established one that serves at least 15 youth between the ages of 3 and 18 is eligible to apply for these Youth Garden Grants. A total of 30 programs will be awarded. Applications are due December 18, 2020. Learn more and apply here. USDA Farm to School Grants The USDA heard your feedback and has made some big changes to the farm to school grant program this year! Updates include:
Extended application time (deadline is January 8, 2021)
Institutions operating CACFP and SFSP are eligible to apply—programs do not need to be based at a school site
Small- to medium-sized agricultural producers are eligible for priority consideration
Turnkey projects: a simplified application process for specific pre-selected best-practice projects.
You'll hear from us again next month. In the meantime, we'd love to hear from you!