Hey USDA! | Civil Eats

Hey USDA!

Yesterday I had the privilege of attending the Chicago USDA Listening Session on the Child Nutrition & WIC Reauthorization Act with the Great Lakes National Farm to School Network. The session opened with a three-minute video on the Milwaukee Summer Feeding Program with a voice over by Sherrie Tussler from the Hunger Task Force. She then concluded with 22 seconds of questions posed by children (see above).

Wow. You could hear heart strings tearing.

Kudos to Sherrie and the Hunger Task Force for using their allotted 3.5 minutes to visually show how this federal policy is impacting communities. You blew us away.

Open to the public, the session enabled whoever pre-registered to speak up for the changes necessary to the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, Summer Food Service, Child & Adult Care Food Program, WIC, and more. Testimony was provided by food service staff, a mother of seven children, farm to school advocates, vegetarian crusaders, anti-hunger groups, Departments of Education, Action for Healthy Kids, American Dietetic Association, National Farm to School Network, and others…not to mention the National Pork Board, American Commodity Distribution Association, and the Schwann’s Company (the largest supplier of pizza and frozen entries for school lunch).

The transcripts won’t be available until mid October, and I’ll make sure to share them when available, highlighting what the different groups requested in their testimony to the USDA.

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Until then, please watch the videos!

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Debra Eschmeyer, Co-Founder and Program Director of FoodCorps, Farmer, and Communications and Outreach Director of the National Farm to School Network, has 15 years of farming and sustainable food system experience. Working from her organic farm in Ohio, Debra oversees the FoodCorps program development for service members working on school gardens and Farm to School while deciphering policy and building partnerships to strengthen the roots of FoodCorps. She also manages a national media initiative on school gardens, farmers’ markets and healthy corner stores. Read more >

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