Farm to School local food measure advanced by Nebraska Legislators

BEATRICE - A Plymouth lawmaker's Nebraska farm-to-school program bill has advanced in the Nebraska Legislature.  The measure would provide locally grown and minimally processed food to elementary and secondary school students.

LB396 was introduced by Sen. Tom Brandt.  It would require the state Department of Education to hire a coordinator to administer the program, Students could get hands-on learning activities, such as farm visits, cooking demonstrations, school gardening and composting programs.

The coordinator would partner with public agencies and nonprofits for building a communication network linking farmers and schools.  Schools would be encouraged to develop and improve their nutrition plans using locally grown or processed food.

Brandt says a localized food production and distribution system would increase the likelihood that current and future generations always will have plenty to eat.

Two more votes are required for final approval of the bill.