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Farm Fresh Fridays for Schools and Child Care Centers
Texas schools and child care centers can connect with local agriculture through Farm Fresh Fridays, an exciting way to engage young minds and help students develop strong and sustainable connections to local food, farmers and ranchers. Plus, Farm Fresh Fridays teaches children about local agriculture by adding the regional flavor of Texas products to school and child care center meals and snacks.

Get involved!
Step 1 — Schools, participate in TDA's Local Products Challenge
Step 2 — Connect with local farmers and ranchers
Step 3 — Incorporate farm fresh educational activities


Schools  Minimize  
Farm to school activities, like Farm Fresh Fridays, provide a solid foundation for establishing lifelong healthy habits, promoting student health and strengthening local economies.
Farm Fresh Fridays: Celebrating Texas Agriculture and Local Products in Schools
Farm Fresh Fridays Information Card
Looking for a fun way to celebrate Texas agriculture in your school, child care center or summer meal program? Look no further than Farm Fresh Fridays!
This card introduces a fun way to bring local agriculture to your program. But don’t worry, activities do not have to be limited to Fridays. 

Local Products Challenge
Seasonality Wheel TDA issues the Local Products Challenge each year to encourage Texas schools to put more local ingredients on school menus. 
Learn more and pledge participation in the challenge here.

Connecting with Local Farmers and Ranchers
Schools can purchase directly from a local farmer or rancher, or a group of farmers and ranchers working together in a cooperative.
Learn more about how to connect with and purchase products from local producers.
Find a producer near you in our Farm Fresh Network.

Produce Availability
Use this interactive tool to identify when Texas-grown fruits and vegetables are in season and where in the state the item is grown.
Explore the new tool today! 

Boost Meal Appeal Toolkit for Schools
This resource provides schools the needed tools to appeal to students’ healthier instincts with meals that are attractive and taste great, as well as comply with federal regulations. TDA has collected best practices and planning tools in an easy-to-use format in order to strengthen your child nutrition program and reduce waste. The result – more children embracing the 3E’s of Healthy Living – Education, Exercise and Eating Right, and a stronger Texas.
Go here to connect with this resource.

Keep the Beat! Family Cookbook
This cookbook, developed by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, contains more than 40 recipes and focuses on family friendly meals, snacks and recipes designed to get children participating in the kitchen.

Cooking for the Seasons — Summer
TDA’s Cooking for the Seasons — Summer cookbook includes menu-ready recipes focused on fresh produce available in Texas during the summer months. Recipes are tailored to child nutrition programs and can be incorporated into a seasonal cycle menu or weekly menus. 

All of the recipes have been tested up to 25 servings and analyzed for nutritional value. Nutrient analysis was conducted using the child nutrition database approved by USDA. Nutrient analysis is required in the school meal program. 

Education Service Center chefs at regions 10, 12, and 13 created the recipes to help child nutrition professionals use more local foods in meals and snacks.

Child Care Centers  Minimize  
Farm to Child Care Best Practices
This collection of farm to child care success stories can provide inspiration of how Texas child care centers have successfully incorporated local food and education.
Learn more here.

Boost Meal Appeal Toolkit for Child and Adult Care Food Program Participants
Child nutrition professionals can use Boost Meal Appeal tools and ideas to create healthy meals that look appealing, taste great and comply with federal requirements. In anticipation of the updated CACFP meal pattern, this site provides tools to move ahead of the curve and offer a variety of foods, as well as introduce new foods, that children are sure to enjoy.
Go here to connect with this resource.

Recipes for Healthy Kids: Cookbook for Child Care Centers 
The recipes in this cookbook are designed to help adults and children consume the whole rainbow of healthy foods: dark leafy greens, orange and red vegetables, even those less common purple fruits and vegetables are incorporated. Fun names and kid-approved flavors make sure this cookbook is full of instant classics.

Funding Opportunities Available to Support Farm Fresh Fridays  Minimize  
Expanding the 3E's Grant Program 
This grant program helps public schools develop better health and nutrition programs and prevent obesity among Texas children. The objective of the program is to increase children’s awareness of the importance of good nutrition and encourage them to pursue healthy lifestyles using the 3E’s of Healthy Living — Education, Exercise and Eating Right. 
Learn more about the grant program here.

Urban Schools Agricultural Grant Program
The Urban Schools Agricultural Grant Program is an exciting agriculture-related program for elementary and middle public school pupils enrolled in districts with a student population of 49,000 or more. The program helps improve students' understanding of agriculture through projects such as school vegetable gardens, which can provide lessons not only in horticulture, but also in water conservation and nutrition.
Learn more about the grant program here.