Philadelphia charter school students will receive more servings of fresh fruit and vegetables, including packaged slices of apples, intended to appeal to elementary school pupils.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced a new healthy foods initiative at Commons Market, a North Philadelphia warehouse that receives fresh fruit and vegetables from farmers across the region and distributes the produce to Philadelphia public schools. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has increased support for nutrition education and cooking classes, school gardens and field trips that take students to local farms through its Farm to School grant in response to growing demand for fresh produce.
Along with Major Michael Nutter the $93,000 grant for the Apple A Day program was presented to Common Market’s Co-Founders Haile Johnston and his spouse Tatiana Garcia-Granados. The local warehouse serves 50 public and private schools in the city of Philadelphia. It was in close collaboration with Lintons that the planning for this program was developed. “When the kids get these prepackaged apples in the classrooms as snack, they’ll be able to identify what farm those apples came from,” said Johnston. “It’s also going to produce other materials that tell the story of those farmers so that the kids in the classroom have the opportunity to connect more deeply with the people that grew the food.”
In Philadelphia, Lintons serves nutritionally appealing meals at approximately thirty-five public charter schools. Russ Hengst, VP of Education Services was on hand for the presentation and is looking forward to procure more local products for its school contracts. All farm product purchased for this program will be made directly through Lintons Managed Services. Over the past year Lintons has become a trusted partner of Common Market, as they have proved dedicated to providing high quality, farm food to their student meals. To date Lintons has procured over 5,000 cases of farm food from Common Market- the equivalent of 5 tractor-trailers full. Lintons Managed Services provides onsite and delivered Food and Nutrition Services to various programs focused on education, health care, adult aging, human service providers and community corrections.