Our Organic Northwest
12:16 pm
Tue May 18, 2010

USDA Visits Eugene For Farm To School Programs

Eugene, Ore.- Representatives from the US Department of Agriculture will visit two Eugene, Oregon school districts next week. Bethel and 4J were chosen along with a dozen other districts across the nation as models for their farm to school programs.

Farm to School teaches students about local food. Megan Kemple is Farm to School Coordinator with the Willamette Farm and Food Coalition. She says many children don't know where their food comes from.

Megan Kemple: "That simple understanding is one of my main goals in the program that food comes from the ground. It comes from a farm. Someone has to grow it, and it grows around here."

Kemple says the visit is a chance for her and the districts to tell the USDA what could be improved.

Megan Kemple: "There are currently restrictions on local purchasing with federal dollars and I'd like to see those restrictions go away."

Kemple says she'd also like to see changes to the commodity food system. USDA representatives will spend three days in Eugene next week. (KLCC)