A series of workshops across Minnesota will encourage school and other cafeterias to serve more locally grown food.
The eight workshops begin Monday and run through April.
Stephanie Heim of the University of Minnesota Extension Service tells Minnesota Public Radio one of the primary challenges for food service directors is figuring out which farmers in their want to sell to them wholesale. And she says a lot of farmers may not know which institutional buyers are interested.
The Farm to School effort has grown significantly in Minnesota. The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy says the number of Minnesota school districts working with local farmers rose from fewer than 20 in 2006 to 145 in 2011.
Other institutions, like hospitals, are also interested in sourcing more local food.