More than 105,000 students statewide participated and learned about agriculture, while eating locally-grown and -made meals. They talked about healthy eating, innovation, farmers and ranchers, and even their own roles as young people engaged in the local food movement. School districts also included agriculture in the classrooms with STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education-focused materials and guest speakers.
“Agriculture is an important subject for every age and generation, and the Colorado Proud program wants to highlight the relationship between the way we eat and the way we live. School Meal Day promotes conversations with students about local food and agriculture, while also encouraging them to try Colorado’s local products,” said Danielle Trotta, Colorado Proud Program Manager. “More than ever, it’s important for students to understand agriculture’s value, heritage, and history, as our future consumers and influencers.”
Trotta and Colorado Commissioner of Education Katy Anthes visited Elkhart Elementary School in Aurora.
“CDE is proud to participate in grants and programs that help school districts bring local, fresh food to the students in their cafeterias,” said Anthes. “Access to delicious and nutritious food is a key to student success and I sincerely thank each agency, organization, farmer and school administrator that helps make healthy meals possible!”
Colorado farmers and ranchers produce food items that provide the nutrients children and adults need to thrive. Agriculture contributes $47 billion to Colorado’s economy annually and provides more than 195,000 jobs. With more than 38,900 farms and ranches encompassing 32 million acres, it is easy to understand the value this industry adds to Colorado.