Nebraska Farm To School

Farm to School Census

All Nebraska School Food Authorities should participate in the 2023 Farm to School Census. Surveys were emailed to School Food Authorities on October 2, 2023. Complete your survey and help Nebraska show that #LocalCounts!

Nebraska 2023 Farm to School Census Webinar 11/14/2023

Farm to School Grant

The United States Department of Agriculture will award up to $12 million in competitive grants to eligible entities through the Farm to School Grant Program in FY 2024. Each grant helps implement farm to school programs that increase access to local food in eligible schools, connect children with agriculture for better health, and inspire youth to consider careers in agriculture.

Farm to School RFA Webinar 11/15/2023

Students from Chambers Public school crunched into local apples during the 2023 Nebraska Crunch Off!

2023 Crunch results will be available at the end of November.

Nebraska Crunch 2023 Participating Counties


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Deadline: January 12, 2024

The Patrick Leahy Farm to School Grant Program is designed to increase the availability of local foods in schools and help connect students to the sources of their food through education, taste tests, school gardens, field trips, and local food sourcing for school meals. Grants can launch new farm to school programs or expand existing efforts.

The Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 Farm to School Grant awards projects of 24 months in length for funding up to $500,000. Applicants are required to provide matching support of at least 25 percent of the total project budget in the form of cash or in-kind contributions.

The RFA offers three tracks – Implementation, State Agency, and Turnkey – to support a variety of projects and implementation stages. Eligible applicants may include schools and other institutions that operate Child Nutrition Programs, Indian Tribal Organizations, agricultural producers, or groups of agricultural producers, nonprofit entities, and State and local agencies.

For more information, visit the Patrick Leahy Farm to School Grant Program website.

Farm Credit Services of America Working Here Fund program supports rural communities with focus areas that fund ag education, young and beginning producers, hunger and nutrition, rural disaster relief and essential services. Typically, an organization is eligible to receive no more than one Working Here Fund grant within a 12-month period and no more than three grants within a five-year period. The current deadline for the $5,000 grant option is September 30, 2023; the current deadline for the $15,000 grant option is December 31, 2023; the current deadline for the $25,000 grant option is December 31, 2023.

KidsGardening offers a variety of grants to new and existing youth garden programs across the nation. Each funding opportunity has its own timeline, defining features, eligibility requirements, and reporting expectations. Explore the open grant programs at this site and see which one might be the best fit for your particular situation. If something catches your eye, you can find more details on each grant’s homepage.

The Local Food for Schools (LFS)  is funding for states to assist in the supply chain disruption brought on by the pandemic. The Nebraska Department of Education received nearly $1.5 million through the LFS program to distribute to eligible schools, explicitly to be used on the purchase of local foods for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP). LFS will strengthen Nebraska’s food system by helping to build a fair, competitive, and resilient local food chain, and expand local and regional markets with an emphasis on purchasing from historically underserved producers and processors. For more information, allocation amounts, or to access the FAQ visit Nebraska’s Local Food for School webpage. 

The Salad Bars To Schools program is focused on donating salad bars to school districts so every child across our nation has daily access to fresh fruits and vegetables.  Learn everything you need to know about salad bars to schools grants.

Contact us at:

NDE – Nutrition Services
(402) 471-2488

Updated November 16, 2023 8:17am