Farm to School Video Series

The University of Minnesota has produced a series of videos on different topics geared towards producers interested in Farm to School.

Farm to School Webinar: Lessons learned from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy

This one-hour webinar with IATP’s Program Director for Local Foods, JoAnne Berkenkamp, provides a thorough overview of Farm to School and lessons learned from IATP’s Farm to School work in Minnesota.

Grower Perspectives on Farm to School in Minnesota: A Survey of Interested Farmers, Ranchers and Other Producers

This survey from Spring 2012 captured growers’ perceptions of Farm to School, interest levels, challenges, aspirations and strategies that could enable growers to benefit more fully from this growing market.

Marketing Local Food

Marketing Local Food is a handbook designed to help Minnesota farmers explore the various options for marketing local food. It introduces the basics of different marketing systems, suggests resources and includes profiles of farmers who are selling farm products directly to consumers via farmers' markets, roadside stands, CSAs, on-farm stores; as well as information and profiles about selling indirectly via retail food establishments or food services.

Minnesota Grown Wholesaler Database

The Minnesota Grown Program at the MN Department of Agriculture is creating a new database of Minnesota Grown members who market to wholesale accounts like schools and institutions. It enables growers who wholesale to post information about their products, and buyers can search the database by product, location and criteria such as liability insurance, organic certification and so on. Click here to register for the database.

Profiles of Minnesota Schools participating in Farm to School

Minnesota page of the National Farm to School website with profiles of Minnesota schools with Farm to School programs. You can also access recent Minnesota media coverage for Farm to School. 

School Foodservice Leaders 4th Annual Farm to School in Minnesota Survey (March 2012)

Survey by IATP and the MN School Nutrition Association documenting the growth of Farm to School activity in Minnesota, types of local foods used, food purchasing strategies and on-going challenges.

September is Minnesota Farm to School Month

This free resource contains ideas for ways to celebrate the connections you make with your food and schools.


Selling to Schools


This free resource from the University of Minnesota helps rural business owners develop a business plan. 

Agricultural Business Resources from the University of Minnesota

Agricultural producers face uncertain markets and narrow margins. These programs, software, and tools teach producers and professionals about: risk management, grain marketing plans, transferring the business to the next generation, and agricultural policy questions.

Farm Aid’s Farm-to-School 101 Toolkit

Provides a general overview on Farm to School

Food System Economic Partnership

Farm to School Toolkit: Designed for school food service staff but includes examples of a Farmer Statement of Understanding Form, Partner Memorandum of Understanding Form, and Grower questionnaire.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program

Fact Sheets with tips for farmers, schools and produce suppliers to serve local produce as part of the USDA Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program.

How to Sell Produce Direct to Schools

Information for producers about school food budgets and resources to assist in selling and marketing fruits and vegetables to local schools.

Marketing Michigan Products to Schools

A Step-By-Step Guide: This online guide provides general information on Farm to School for farmers and includes very detailed tools for farm assessment, food safety, budgeting, marketing, and understanding the school bid and procurement environment in Michigan.

Oklahoma Farm to School

Tips, Tools and Resources for Food Distribution and Food Safety: Includes Distribution and Cost Templates, sample Memorandum of Understanding between farmers and school buyers, Calculator for translating pounds and bushels into school lunch servings, Food Safety Checklist.

Planting a Farm to School Program, Tips for Farmers

A fact sheet from Community Alliance with Family Farmers giving general advice on how farmers can get started selling to schools.

School Food Service Market information from the USDA

School food service can be a steady, reliable market for farmers, but they also have buying policies that are unique and specific to their industry. As is the case in any business venture, a good initial step is to learn more about the customer - in this case, the school food service market.

Wisconsin Farm to School: Toolkit for Producers

Whether you are just starting off or looking to expand your production for schools, this toolkit will provide you with resources to aid in your success. It provides information on knowing your customer, preparing your business, connecting with schools and school relationships and marketing.


Food Safety and Liability

Bridging the GAPs: Strategies to Improve Produce Safety, Preserve Farm Diversity and Strengthen Local Food Systems

This report from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy begins with an overview of existing on-farm food safety policies and programs, analyzes the ramifications of existing and proposed protocols, and offers policy recommendations for addressing produce safety.

Creating an On Farm Food Safety Plan (templates)

This downloadable manual, “FSP4U - A Food Safety Plan for You” by Michele Schermann, RN MS, UMN Agricultural Health and Safety Research Fellow, provides common sense guidance for farmers to establish food safety plans. It is packed full of useful record keeping templates, and will help fruit and vegetable producers set up food safety systems to prepare for USDA Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) audits.

Farmers’ Recordkeeping Toolkit: Instructions and Templates

Farmers’ Legal Action Group (FLAG) is pleased to announce the release of a farmers’ recordkeeping toolkit, Recordkeeping Instructions and Templates for Small-Scale Fruit and Vegetable Growers. The toolkit contains instructions and recording templates that are intended to be useful to small-scale fruit and vegetable farmers to track their farm activities.

Food Safety and Liability Insurance for Small Scale and Limited Resource Farmers

These materials from the Community Food Security Coalition provide a clear, concise overview of the issues. Available in English and Spanish.

Food Safety Factsheets and Resources from the University of Minnesota

Includes a section about on-farm food safety plans and tools.

Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Network for Education and Training

Cornell University provides detailed information here.

On-farm food safety information for food service personnel

October 2011 - Document from Michele Schermann (University of Minnesota Bioproducts & Biosystems Engineering Dept) providing a list of questions foodservice staff may ask farmers about on-farm food safety practices for purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables.

Public Health Law Center: Legal Issues Impacting Farm to School and School Garden Programs in Minnesota

Legal synopsis from June 2011 providing an overview of the key legal issues involved in farm to school and school garden programs in Minnesota.

Tips, Tools and Guidelines for Food Distribution and Food Safety

Information from Oklahoma Farm to School.


Educating Kids about Farm to School

A Farmers Guide to Hosting Farm Visits for Children (CUESA)

This guide from the Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture (funded by University of California) shares workable, effective ideas for planning and hosting educationally powerful visits. Offers focused activities for elementary school students.

Celebrate Farm to School Month in partnership with FFA

Flyer with Farm to School activities to explore with FFA and how to find an FFA leader in your Minnesota school district or nearby.  

Community Alliance for Family Farmers

Provides many resources for farmers including Making the Farm Connection: A Guide for Field Trips to Farms, Planting a FARM to SCHOOL Program, Tips for Farmers.

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