Each week, REAP's Farm to School team works to ensure that hundreds of pounds of locally grown fruits and vegetables are washed, cut, and packaged to be served as snacks in Madison classrooms.
Once processed, these snacks are delivered to the 13 Madison elementary schools participating in the USDA Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. Kids and teachers love the snacks, and farmers love knowing their hard work is providing healthy snacks for children.
Over 5,000 students in almost 300 classrooms enjoy the REAP Farm to School snack each week. Kids are introduced to produce they have never tasted before and learn to eat with the seasons. A bountiful fall harvest supplies apples, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, green beans, Concord grapes, and other items, while in the winter kids snack on carrots, kohlrabi, sweet potatoes, and other hearty vegetables. For many snack participants, this is an integral source of fresh fruits and vegetables in their diet.
In Spring 2014, REAP distributed over 100,000 snacks to more than 5,000 students, totalling nearly eight tons of Wisconsin produce and generating almost $175,000 in sales for local farmers.
"The snack program brings out so many smiles and good vibes at [our] school. Thanks for all you do to make this wonderful program so successful in Madison."
Carol Troyer-Shank, Allis Elementary
2014-2015 Participating schools
2013-14 Participating Farms
Each week, the snack is accompanied by our educational Snack Bite materials, which provide nutritional and agricultural information about the snacks for teachers to pass on to their students. Children learn about the farmers that grew their snack and make connections between their food and the land it comes from. See example Snack Bites on the Farm to School Resources page.
Preparing the Snack: Tipi Produce Carrots
In February 2014, the Farm to School team processed this snack of organic carrots from Tipi Produce in Evansville, WI, at FEED Kitchens in Madison. 750 pounds of carrots were trimmed, sliced, cleaned, weighed, packaged, and labeled for delivery to 12 elementary schools in Madison.