Dept. of Agriculture visits local school to encourage healthy eating


PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — As part of a health initiative, The Florida Department of Agriculture made a stop at Patronis Elementary on Thursday. They are teaching students about nutrition and buying fresh produce locally.

Representatives from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services prepared fresh produce including salads, fruits, and vegetables for these 3rd graders to try out.

Each 3rd-grade classroom got an hour with the representatives to hear them talk about the benefits of buying fresh produce and to discuss buying locally grown foods.

Chef Paula Kendrick with the Florida Department of Agriculture says there are around 47,000 farms in Florida alone.

“All of them so far have tried something they’ve never tried before. Even just seeing them trying stuff is amazing, but also teaching them about the number of farms we have in Florida. Also teaching them that we are an agricultural state, they really don’t know that. So it’s amazing to be able to teach them that and to see their eyes go ‘wow that’s awesome!’”

This is part of the Florida Farm to School Initiative as the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services continues in their efforts to get schools to work more with local farmers to bring fresh and local produce into school cafeterias.

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