As 2018 draws near, CDFA’s Office of Farm to Fork can look back on all that happened in 2017 and know that there will be an even-stronger commitment to improving all Californians’ access to California-grown foods by working to reduce food insecurity and advancing farm-to-school relationships. We are pleased to share the details of this work through the release of the 2016 – 2017 Annual Report, a redesigned website, and a new strategic plan.
In 2017 the Office assumed leadership of the California Farm to School Network, an organization dedicated to increasing student access to food grown within our state and educating them about the production of that food. The network connects 4,300 (stakeholders) (can we say farmers and school districts?) across the state with the collective goal of improving the quality of student meals and inspiring lifelong healthy eating habits.
The Office of Farm to Fork is also operating the California Nutrition Incentive Program (CNIP), which encourages the purchase and consumption of healthy, California-grown fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts by nutrition benefit clients at certified farmers’ markets. The program is a win-win for farmers and low-income Californians. Since launching this past summer, CNIP has provided over $500,000 in fresh fruit and vegetables to low-income shoppers. More details can be found here.
Throughout 2017 the Office also continued its commitment to provide stakeholders and the public with reports, program profiles, and best practices farm-to -school an food access. Materials are available on the newly redesigned www.CAFarmtoFork.com and are arranged by topic.
There is still a long road ahead, but the Office of Farm to Fork is pleased with the roadmap that has been created to this point and will be working to leverage all available resources for the benefit of Californians well into the future.