Arkansas Department of Agriculture accepting applications for Farm to School grants

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Arkansas Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for grants to help schools start or expand farm to school activities. The Arkansas School Garden Grant Program is available to help schools start or expand gardens on school grounds.

Applications will be accepted through November 30, 2021. The Arkansas School Garden Grant Program will award $500 grants to 60 schools to purchase soil, specialty crop seeds and plants, and gardening equipment.

The Department is also launching the new Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program to help schools lead cafeteria taste tests of locally grown specialty crops. The Department will award $250 grants to 30 schools to purchase kitchen equipment and utensils, serving materials, and specialty crop seeds and plants.

School gardens and taste tests have proven to be valuable tools in teaching children about agriculture, nutrition, and a variety of skills. The Department is pleased to add the new taste test grant program this year as another way to help schools start or expand farm to school activities. The lessons learned through these programs can have a lasting impact on children, their families, and entire communities.

Wes Ward, Secretary of Agriculture

The grant programs are available to public and private K-12 schools, early childhood education facilities, and alternative learning environments. All eligible schools are encouraged to apply, whether they already have existing farm to school activities or they are just getting started with school gardens and local procurement.

The application for both programs can be found here. Applicants can apply for one or both grant opportunities.

More information about the Arkansas School Garden Grant Program and Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program can be found here.

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