Farm to School Program Makes for Healthier Students, Economy

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Students at Marshfield High School have been seeing some big changes to their lunch menu.

"We used to have a lot more junk food," senior Thomas Gisvold said. "And then, you could tell, as the years went by, it kept getting healthier and healthier every year."

With federal guidelines to follow, the school district is giving students healthier menu items to put on their trays, such as whole grain foods, and more produce. They're doing it through a program called Farm to School, which, through grant money, allows the district to purchase food from local farmers and producers.

"We work with local farmers and producers to purchase local foods to bring on to the school lunch menu," Marshfield School District Food Service Director Stacey Weichelt said. "It's important to help local farmers, have students eat fresh, local produce. Food tastes so much better if it is purchased or grown locally."

While some students may miss having more 'junk food' items to choose from, many have embraced the changes.

"I do believe that if you eat healthier you do perform better," senior Amara Yaeger said. "Your brain works and you're not as tired."

"I think it's a good feeling. It means that as a community we're doing pretty well growing our own food, and we're able to give it to all the students here at school," Gisvold said.

To date, the Marshfield School District has spent nearly $6,000 dollars towards food through the Farm to School program, obtaining it through 9 different growers and distributors.

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