310.450.8338, ext. 259††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† May 2, 2008
Santa Monica Farmersí Market Celebrating 10th Anniversary
3,600 apples, 8,000 oranges, 300 cases of grapes and strawberries, 1,400 bunches of carrots, 3,500 cucumbers, 7,884 heads of lettuce served to Santa Monica Malibu students last year!
With childhood obesity on the rise, the health of todayís youth is in critical danger, but a revolutionary school lunch program in Santa Monica Malibu schools is helping students to stay healthy.†† Students choose farm fresh fruits and vegetables for lunch every day! Not only are they getting their fruits and veggies, but they are part of a unique Farm To School Program that purchases directly from farmers at the Santa Monica Farmersí Market. On May 8th the salad bars will be celebrating their 10th anniversary at McKinley Elementary School, where it all began.
The program began in 1997 as a pilot program during summer school at McKinley.† The success over the summer spurred the opening of salad bars in all of the Santa Monica and Malibu schools.† Daily participation at the salad bars has risen to 1,000+ salads per day district wide.†
Major funding for this program was originally provided by grants from various agencies, including the City of Santa Monica, the California Department of Health Services Nutrition Network, The American Cancer Society, 5 A Day, St. Johnís Health Center, and school PTAs. After ten years in operation, the Farmersí Market Salad Bar has become a sustainable school lunch option.† The salad bar is prepared fresh daily by Food and Nutrition Services staff at each school site.
Other program components include school gardens, nutrition education in the classroom, and student field trips to the Santa Monica Farmersí Market.
SANTA MONICA-MALIBU UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
1651 16TH Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404
ph: 310.450.8338; fax: 310.581.1138