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Bill Seeks State Money To Support Farm To School Programs

Ag Department Spokesperson Says Participation Is High Statewide

U.S. Department of Agriculture (CC-BY)

A northwestern Wisconsin lawmaker is introducing a bill that would make state funds available for those taking part in farm to school projects. Democratic Rep. Beth Meyers of Bayfield said she would like the state to designate $250,000 in grants over the next two years for farmers and schools.

Meyers said the money would increase children’s access to fresh food and support growers.

“I’d like to see it expanded, and I think putting some money behind this program will help that happen,” she said.

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The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture’s Sarah Elliott said around half a million kids at more than 55 percent of public schools statewide are taking part in farm to school programs.

“Purchasing local food definitely keeps dollars in your local economy,” Elliot said. “That kind of community support is also driving farm to school efforts.”

Elliott said schools are fundraising, selling locally grown food and using federal USDA grants to support farm to school programs.