News and Events
News from Taste Washington Day 2016
Visit WSDA's website for a copy of the 2016 Taste Washington Day press release
For the sixth year, the Washington Department of Agriculture (WSDA) and the Washington State Nutrition Association will partner with farmers and schools to feature Washington-grown foods in school cafeteria meals. On Oct. 5, Taste Washington Day will again recognize how our state’s agricultural industry contributes to providing healthy school meals throughout the school year.
Thirty-four school districts and 50 farms are participating this year and there’s still time for more to sign up.
In proclaiming Oct. 5 as Taste Washington Day, Gov. Jay Inslee noted that the diversity of our state’s agriculture makes us top national producers of many healthy foods, including fruit like apples, pears and sweet cherries and vegetables such as potatoes, sweet corn and peas.
“The Washington State Local Farms Healthy Kids Act of 2008 has increased emphasis on making sure school children have access to healthy food options,” said WSDA Director Derek Sandison. “Our Farm to School program links farmers and ranchers with schools to provide the freshest possible food. Taste Washington Day is the annual celebration of this partnership.”
The day has become popular with farmers, school administrators, students and parents. Many participating schools use the day to highlight special menus that make the most of their local seasonal fall harvests. Schools may also plan special events for the day, such as inviting a farmer to lunch or doing the Washington Apple Crunch.
“The key to getting our children to want to eat healthy and nutritious foods is to introduce them early and often in their meals,” said Vickie Ayers, vice president of the Washington State Nutrition Association. “Taste Washington Day is also a good reminder of the bountiful agriculture we have right here in our own back yard.”
Locally sourced lunch a hit - The Columbian; Oct. 5, 2016
Wednesday marks Taste Washington Day - Washington Ag Network; Oct. 5, 2016
Grandview Getting Loud for Taste Washington - Washingotn Ag Network; Oct. 05, 2016
Taste Washington serves up a school of tasty tilapia tacos - The Wenatchee World; Oct. 12, 2016
Riverview schools eat local in observance of Taste Washington Day Oct. 5 - Snoqualmie Valley Record; Oct. 18, 2016
Other News from Washington State:
Making Fresh Foods the New Norm
For three elementary schools in Washington, fresh produce from the salad bar has become the new norm.- See more at: http://www.chefannfoundation.org/news-media/the-lunch-line-blog/making-fresh-foods-the-new-norm/#sthash.Q4OWR6ek.dpuf
Ellensburg School District Navigates Stringent Regulations, Puts Focus on Fresh Foods - The Daily Record, April 1, 2017
Worms at Head of Class in Gardening Project - The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin, March 9, 2017
Farm to School program champions more healthy eating - The Columbian; March 8, 2017
Methow Valley school kids enjoy local lunch - Methow Valley News; Feb. 11, 2016
Making Fresh Foods the New Norm - Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools; Feb. 8, 2017
South Whidbey School District garden program hits the big screen - South Whidbey Record; Oct. 29, 2016
Franklin Pierce Students Visit the Farm - Pierce Prairie Post blog; Sept. 29, 2016
Kids Get Their Hands Dirty to Learn About Healthy Eating - Seattle Times; Sept. 14, 2016
Congratulations to Franklin Pierce School District for being voted the "One in a Melon" district for Washington State in 2015!
Historic Ohop Valley farm getting new life as school campus - The News Tribune; June 26, 2016
Concrete Elementary students reap rewards of Leadership Skagit project - Skagit Valley Herald; May 6, 2016
USDA Grant fuels Farm-to-School momentum in PT - PT Leader; Nov 25, 2015
USDA Helps Schools Connect with Local Farmers and Ranchers - USDA Press Release; Nov. 17, 2015
Congratulations to Vancouver Public Schools, Concrete School District, Tumwater School District, Eatonville School District, and Port Townsend School District for being a part of USDA Farm to School grants in 2016!
Farmers, Schools Taste Potential Partnerships - Capital Ag Press; Sept. 26, 2014
New processing center brings more local produce to Whatcom County schools – Bellingham Herald; June 3, 2014.
USDA Farm to School Grant Awards Announced! - Nov, 19, 2013
Congratulations to Concrete School District and Olympia School District on receiving planning grant and implementation grant, respectively!
A complete list of recipents can be found here.