The Harvest of the Month Program Brings Seasonal Favorites to Portland Schools

photo: Whole Foods Market

Whole Foods has been the target of green writers in the past for having some hidden eco-demons, but in this case the organic giant has stepped it up in providing the best in local foods to schools across the Portland area. Check out the results when Whole Foods and EcoTrust partner up for the Harvest of the Month Program.The Harvest of the Month Program features an Oregon grown product on the lunch menus of participating schools on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month. The program is made possible through a partnership between Whole Foods Market and Ecotrust.

Ecotrust is a nonprofit that establishes and maintains relationships between farmers, ranchers, and fishermen and restaurant chefs, grocery retail buyers, and other distributors. Its mission is to connect small sustainable farms to their customers, keeping demand high for the best seasonal offerings in the area.

From kindergarten on through high school, kids at schools in the program get to enjoy fabulous seasonal favorites like local cucumbers, sweet corn on the cob, parsnips, cabbage, potatoes, pears, radishes, and asparagus. Eighty-five schools in the area currently participate in the program.

The Program's Mission
Combining locally grown goodness into homemade meals shows kids how delicious local produce is in comparison with the vending machine monster found at the other end of the cafeteria. After all, getting them started young is always the best way to instill green values in your kids.

Oregon Farms in the Spotlight
Below are some of the awesome local farms chosen to be a part of the program. Each participating farm uses sustainable farming practices without chemicals or pesticides. And they all work hard to keep their impact on the planet minimal. As the program continues to grow, additional farms will be added to the roster to give the kids as much variety as possible.

Hurst Berry Farm
Organically Grown Company
Pollock and Son
Rod Friesen
Willamette Valley Fruit
Unger Farms
Canby Asparagus Farm

The Harvest of the Month Program shows kids the benefits of using small local farms versus mass producers, which can strip foods of their nutritional value and taste, harm the environment, and put scary additives into our food supply.

Learn more about sustainable farms:
"Sustainable" Label Offered As Alternative to "Organic"
Organic Farms and College Campuses
Sustainable Table's Eat Well Guided Tour

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