The program is beneficial on many different levels to both the farmers and the school system. Local farmers benefit not only from having a large year round paying customer but even get to sell some of the foods that would have otherwise been rejected by other consumers (for example potatoes that would have been too small are PERFECT for tater-tots!). The Schools are able to serve healthier, better quality food to their students, create a relationship with their local farmers (students get to go on field trips to the farms) and remove a large portion of their imported food.
When Anne Cody isn’t building bonds between schools and farms she’s working on her other program: The Kindergarten Initiative, which, similarly to the Mass Farm to School Program, helps offer locally grown snacks and nutrition education to Worcester kindergarteners and their parents.
Some of the toughest obstacles that Anne faces are convincing some of the lower income schools to buy local food because of the difficulties of organizing school financing. She feels her job is making a large difference in society and is an exciting change for the school system. She is grateful to live in a community, which is such a large support for local food and I believe that with her successes already, her program could eventually join local farms and schools together all over country!
Farm to School: http://www.farmtoschool.org/MA/programs.htm