Skip to Content
Home  /  News  /  Stories  /  Story

Michigan Schools to Buy Local for School Lunches

Pilot Program to Boost Michigan Economy and Provide Kids Fresher Produce

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2011

Debbie Stabenow, Chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today announced that Michigan will be one of only two states to participate in a new pilot program that gives schools increased ability to use locally produced fruits and vegetables in school lunches. The program, overseen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will help to boost Michigan's growing agriculture industry and provide healthy and fresher produce to school children.

"When we make things here and grow things here, we get jobs here," Chairwoman Stabenow said. "Having Michigan schools buy locally from Michigan farmers helps boost our economy, and provides kids with fresher fruits and vegetables. Agriculture is Michigan's second largest industry and supports one out of every four jobs in our state, and this is a great way to help support a key sector of our economy."  

Besides California, Michigan leads the nation in crop diversity, producing some 200 commodities on more than 10 million acres of farmland. Michigan also leads the nation in the production of several specialty crops including red tart cherries, blueberries, squash and cucumbers. The new pilot program, also being conducted in Florida, will use commercial distribution models that are already in place and allow schools to obtain Michigan's locally grown produce.

The pilot is a joint effort between USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service and Food and Nutrition Service and will serve as an alternative to the Department of Defense's commodity procurement program for schools. USDA is responsible for purchasing 15 to 20 percent of the foods that are used in the National School Lunch Program. Purchases include poultry, meat, fish, fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy, and oils. USDA Foods serve the dual purpose of supporting agricultural markets and providing nutritious foods to school children and needy Americans.

Flint/Saginaw Bay Office
432 N. Saginaw St, Suite 301
Flint, MI 48502
Phone: (810) 720-4172
View District News

Mid-Michigan Office
Senator Debbie Stabenow
221 W. Lake Lansing Road, Suite 100
East Lansing, MI 48823
Phone: (517) 203-1760
View District News

Northern Michigan Office
3335 S. Airport Road West, Suite 6B
Traverse City, MI 49684
Phone: (231) 929-1031
View District News

Southeast Michigan Office
243 W.Congress Suite 550
Detroit, MI 48226
Phone: (313) 961-4330
View District News

Upper Peninsula Office
1901 W. Ridge
Marquette, MI 49855
Phone: (906) 228-8756
View District News

Washington, DC Office
Senator Debbie Stabenow
133 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: (202) 224-4822
TTY: (202) 224-2066
E-mail

Western Michigan Office
3280 E. Beltline Court NE, Suite 400
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Phone: (616) 975-0052
View District News

Contact Us

Email Me     DC Office Info