Farm to School will continue

By Mitchell Willetts

The Enterprise

A statewide program encouraging schools to buy food from Oregon farmers and producers was recently saved in the Legislature, allocating $4.5 million to participating schools, including in Malheur County.

The money will be split among 144 school districts to help cover the cost of buying locally grown or processed food. The program faced being cut.

"Oregon foods are often more expensive than food that comes from California or elsewhere," said Megan Kemple, state director of the National Farm to School Network. "The idea is that the grants pay that extra little bit of cost.”

She recently testified to legislators that $1.6 milion in state grants in 2015-2016 resulted in $15 million in spending on Oregon food by schools.

"Farm to School is a win-win-win. It's good for communities. It's good for kids," she said. "It's good for . . .