Vermont Press Releases

Vermont celebrates winners of Northeast Farm to School Contest

News Release -- Vermont Food Education Every Day (VT FEED)
May 6, 2015

Betsy Rosenbluth
Project Director
Vermont Food Education Every Day (VT FEED)


Recipes for Success contest and new online “cookbook” of projects & activities features Vermont projects

Shelburne, VT – All across the Northeast, Farm to School programming is helping to grow healthier kids and communities. And four Vermont projects are leading the charge. These creative Farm to School projects and activities are among the top ten in a regional “Recipes for Success” contest. They were recently featured at the first Northeast Farm to Institution Summit in Amherst, MA, and are now included in a free online “cookbook” designed to share replicable Farm to School projects.

Melissa Axelrod from Washington South Supervisory Union was a runner up in the contest, recognized for her project, Farm to Protein, which is a classroom activity that includes nutrition education, a visit from a farmer and chicken, and a hands-on cooking activity. She will receive $100 cash to benefit her Farm to School work. Other Vermont authors honored include: Laura Collaro & Kathy Alexander of Addison Northeast Supervisory Union Food Service Cooperative; Deirdre Holmes of Charlotte Central School’s Farm-to-School program; and Caelan Keenan & Holidae Filkins of the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps.

“Teachers, food service workers, farmers, parents, students and community members across the Northeast are pioneering ways to grow healthy kids, strong schools and vibrant local farm economies.” said Betsy Rosenbluth of Vermont FEED, the Northeast Regional Lead for the National Farm to School Network. “We are thrilled to honor these Farm to School champions and help spread their creative ideas across the country.”

The winning recipes include activities and projects for classrooms, cafeterias and communities and can all be found for free at They integrate farm, food and nutrition education into schools and communities, empowering children and their families to make informed food choices while strengthening the local economy and contributing to vibrant communities. They often combine science, art, health, math, literacy and other disciplines, and frequently involve community members like farmers, chefs and business owners. They range from short (45 minute) activities to year-long projects and lessons. Together, the recipes provide a range of easily adaptable ideas that any school or program can use to create engaging farm and food activities.

The contest was organized by the Northeast Regional Steering Committee of the National Farm to School Network, including Vermont FEED, which serves as the regional lead organization for the Northeast. The contest is funded through a U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm to School grant and by the National Education Association and Café Services, and supported by Farm to Institution New England.

Farm to School programs have exploded across the country in recent years, with a wide range of impacts. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s first Farm to School Census estimated that Farm to School programs in all 50 states are reaching more than 23 million children in over 40,000 schools, helping students gain access to healthy, local foods and helping school cafeterias spend an estimated $385 million on local food.

Schools or communities interested in starting or expanding a Farm to School program can visit the Vermont FEED website at for resources, information and funding opportunities.

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