Institutional buyers of fresh, whole produce need assurances that growers followed safe food handling practices during production, harvest and delivery. These buyers may include the food service staff at schools, hospitals, care facilities and others. The US Food and Drug Administration offers guidelines for farmers to follow, known as Good Agricultural Practices (GAP). But third-party … Continue reading New tool helps food service evaluate on-farm food safety practices
Iowans know fresh, local produce is tasty and good for them. But how can small businesses or non-profits keep supplying local vegetables to clients through long Midwest winters? One potential solution: a mobile produce processing cart allowing them to can or freeze the vegetables. The Mobile Produce Processing Cart Project builds on five years of … Continue reading Growing small-scale produce processing capacity in Iowa
Kick It with Carrots! The Iowa Farm to School and Early Care Network‘s statewide campaign and associated materials highlight carrots as the most chill vegetable of the summer. With this collective focus on this familiar, readily-available local veggie, we hope to increase participation of children at summer meal sites and support local producers. CLICK HERE … Continue reading 2021 Farm to Summer application now open: Kick It with Carrots!
In Iowa, the COVID-19 pandemic abruptly closed restaurants and schools in March 2020. For farmers selling food to those outlets, it immediately created uncertainty about the upcoming growing season. Farmers like Hannah Breckbill from Humble Hands Harvest near Decorah had a high tunnel full of spinach ready to sell. She recalls, “We weren’t sure whether … Continue reading Farmers move online in response to pandemic