Apr 13, 2019
On Sourcing Matters episode 73 we welcome Adam Kesselman, Executive Director & board member of the The Center for Ecoliteracy -&- Vince Caguin, Director of Nutrition Services & Warehousing Natomas Unified School District in Sacramento CA.
Kesselman’s programs encourage schools to teach and
model education for sustainable living – beginning with a good
diet. The students that Adam and Vince work with have an
opportunity to experience and understand how nature sustains life
and how to live accordingly. One such program
– California Thursdays – now servers over 334
million school meals a year, which accounts for 33% of the school
meals in California. Every meal serves California-grown, for
California kids – and of which has focus on food quality and
integrity from the source. Economists estimate that every
dollar spent on local food can generate up to an additional $1.40
in spending, supporting local economies. So, built upon that –
what’s it worth to any of us to provide our kids and our neighbor’s
kids preventative healthcare and good consumption habits – things
that tend to carry-on for a lifetime.
In our 40 minute discussion we chat about the importance of regional production models, and how to own – our own – provenance. We discuss that we’re not all California! We learn of current initiatives that have seen success; with some home runs in there that could see continued Statewide growth, and capacity for a replicable model for other parts of the US. We learn what keeps their current programs afloat, and what steps they’re taking to motivate diverse stakeholders to partake in these rewarding programs.
Could the buying power of hundreds or thousands of neighborhood schools be pooled to encourage regional production capacity? What’s the worth of purchase commitments from districtwide buyers? California has demonstrated that you can guarantee supply of fresh, quality and clean food on a school’s budget – through supporting the growth of modern regional farming infrastructure.
TuneIn to hear about this New School Food plan coming out of California. And, how parts of this approach may very well be helpful to you and your region - where ever that may be.