John Young, Yolo County Agriculture Commissioner inspired Davis Farmers Market Foundation to consider taking their inspirational Davis Farm to School program to other schools throughout Yolo County.

Having met its strategic plan goals in 2011, far earlier than its target of 2015, the plan needed adjustments. Change can be painful and time consuming with meetings, re-framing of bylaws, logo development, vision, etc. But the Davis Farm to School board has been getting up to speed.

It is now official that its name and expanding core mission and vision is a reality. The new name for the foundation is YOLO FARM TO FORK. The new mission retains and strengthens its focus on and commitment to the highly successful and nationally recognized Davis Farm to School program to educate children and the public about the value of a vibrant community food system. It also sets out a new direction to work with others to establish Farm to School and related programs in other Yolo County Communities.

YOLO FARM TO FORK will continue to be a leader in the Farm to School movement through its support of farm fresh foods in the school meal program, farm and garden-based education and recycling.

Of the three elements within the Davis Farm to School Program, only the recycling program is self-sustainable. The goal for the next five years is to make it happen with the other two programs within Davis Farm to School. Eating locally and use of less processed foods leaves a lower carbon footprint in addition to increasing the nutritional intake of students.

The DavisRISE Program is part of the logo for the Davis Farm to School Programs in the schools…”Sow It, Grow It, Reap It, Eat It, and Recycle Too. This links youth with their environment.” It is hoped that after the next five years, the students will fully realize the meaning of the importance of their environmental stewardship: What comes from the earth returns to the earth. Taking responsibility for their school environment is just one step to becoming a responsible steward of the earth.

By Dorothy Peterson