About the Program
Local Food for Schools (LFS), funded by USDA-FNS via CT Dept. of Education, provides school food authorities (SFAs) participating in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) opportunities to include more local foods into school meals.
The goal of the LFS is to increase the purchase of local and regional foods for distribution to schools, and build partnerships with local and regional producers, small businesses, socially disadvantaged farmers/producers, and schools, thereby strengthening local food systems.
This action is significant because many small and/or socially disadvantaged producers in the state rely solely on direct-to-consumer markets largely because of difficulties in creating relationships with institutional clients and lack of production volume.
The benefits of incorporating local foods into school nutrition programs outweighs the challenges of the local procurement process. This is opportunity for buyers and sellers to build mutually beneficial relationships, resilient to challenges like supply chain disruptions, etc. It is easier than you think and there is help!
Register for 1:1 technical assistance provided by Put Local On Your Tray, State Dept. of Education and State Dept. of Agriculture.
The resources below are designed to help school nutrition professionals and producers begin the relationship development process with the ultimate goal of establishing long-term procurement.
- Information about Local Food for Schools Incentive Program.pdf
- LFSIP flow chart
- Integrating Values-Based Local Food Procurement
- Starting The Conversation: A Guide for Food Service Directors and Farmers
- Tips for Buying from Local Farmers and Producers
- Micro Purchase Threshold - the key to using your dollars easily!
- What’s Growing in CT? - Eating Seasonally in K-12 Schools
- Food Safety FAQs.pdf
- Find a Farmer Near You