A partnership between Gwinnett County Public Schools’ nutrition program and Georgia farmers providing healthy meals to local students was honored recently by the Georgia Department of Education and the United States Department of Agriculture.
School officials announced Monday that the GDOE and USDA presented Gwinnett’s School Nutrition Program professionals with a “USDA Best Practice Award” for its Farm-to-School initiative, which was launched at the start of the 2010-2011 school year.
As part of Gwinnett’s ongoing efforts to equip students with healthy habits that are designed to last a lifetime, the Farm-to-School program features a different locally grown fruit or vegetable on the menu every month.
The program is a partnership between GCPS and local Georgia farmers. According to the announcement, during the 2010-2011 school year:
- Gwinnett provided more than 800,000 servings of a fruit or vegetable native to Georgia.
- During the month of October alone, students selected 261,000 apples.
- The school year began in August with close to 225,000 servings of watermelon, and it ended in May with more than 8,000 servings of strawberries.
Officials said the program is the latest in the district’s ongoing efforts to educate students about making healthy meal choices. Other initiatives include the school system’s vegetarian line as well as the offering of all-natural products.