CAFF has pioneered innovative ways to connect family farms to institutions like schools, hospitals and universities. With years of experience consolidating and distributing produce from family farms, CAFF is now focused on working with the distribution industry in California to open wholesale markets for small and mid-sized farms.
Through this initiative, CAFF strives to increase market access for local farmers to sell healthy food to institutions in their own communities, as well as to increase the availability of healthy food to children in those communities. Where funding is available, CAFF also offers trainings to food service employees in these cafeterias on how to process, prepare, and cook local, seasonal produce.
Jennifer Sanez champions local produce at El Roble Elementary School in Gilroy Unified School District. CAFF helped Gilroy Unified purchase local asparagus from RevCo Farm and ran a demonstration for Jennifer to show easy and tasty ways to prepare it. Though she had never tried asparagus before the demonstration, Jennifer dove right in and prepared asparagus so tasty that children in the cafeteria are still talking about it. Jennifer is now a local-food evangelist and always wants to know which vegetable is being taste-tested in the Harvest of the Month kits, the names of the farmers providing the produce, and sample recipes she can adapt or use. CAFF knows that school lunchroom staff can be our children’s biggest advocates and seeks to engage allies like Jennifer.
Write to firstname.lastname@example.org for information on how to bring Farm to School to your district, or how to make a donation to help CAFF grow its programs.