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Farm to School: Buying Tips and Tools

Looking for more resources to support your local food purchases? Explore the resources below:

Buying Local Food for Food Service in MinnesotaThe Minnesota Project — Cooking with seasonal, locally grown foods can be a new experience for many chefs. This guide is intended to be an introduction to the “whys” and “hows” of using local food in a restaurant or other food service establishment.

Michigan Products: A Step by Step GuideC.S. Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems, Michigan State University — Includes useful information and practical tools on incorporating locals foods into your school meals program include sample bid forms and farmer contracts.

Guide for Using Local Foods in SchoolsVermont FEED — A manual designed for school foodservice directors or staff with a step-by-step process for starting local purchasing in your school, success stories about farm-to-cafeteria relationships and seasonal recipes and menu ideas.

Tips, Tools and Guidelines for Food Distribution and Food Safety: Produce CalculatorOklahoma Farm to School — Helps school foodservice and farmers to calculate quantities and costs of various fruits and vegetables for school meals or snacks. The spreadsheet calculates poundage needed from a farmer based on the desired number of servings and serving size. It also calculates the per serving cost based on the price of the produce. Conversion calculations have been take from the USDA Food Buying Guide for Child Nutrition Programs.

USDA Food Buying Guide Online Calculator — The National Food Service Management Institute and Team Nutrition have developed an online calculator to be used with the USDA Food Buying Guide for Child Nutrition Programs (FBG). The interactive and simple to use calculator allows child nutrition professionals to build shopping lists of foods from the FBG and determine how much of each item to purchase to provide enough servings for the children in their program.

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