Farm to early care and education (farm to ECE) offers increased access to local food sourcing, school gardens and food and agriculture education to enhance the quality of the educational experience in all types of ECE settings (e.g., preschools, child care centers, family child care homes, Head Start/Early Head Start, programs in K – 12 school districts).
Farm to ECE offers benefits that parallel the goals and priorities of the early care and education community including emphasis on experiential learning opportunities, parent and community engagement and life-long health and wellness for children, families and caregivers.
- Improves children’s health behaviors including choosing healthier options at school meals
- Increased consumption of fruits and vegetables through farm to school meals and at home
- Decrease in preference for and consumption of less healthy foods and sodas
- Increasing physical activity
Ohio Farm to ECE work
Find out more about the current work of the Ohio Farm to Early Care and Education Coalition under the “Farm to Early Care and Education Coalition” tab on this site.
Farm to ECE Resources
- Getting Started with Farm to ECE
- Getting Started: Planning Guide for Farm to ECE
- Research and literature on Farm to ECE
How to Buy Local Food for Early Care sites
- Local Procurement for Child Care Centers
- Step-by-Step Guide Farm to Early Childhood
- How to Buy, Prepare and Serve Local Foods
How to Serve Local Food for Early Care sites
- How to integrate local foods into meals/snacks
- School Garden Food Safety Manual
- Taste Test guide from WI (Home Grown Taste Test Guide)
Tools to teach about food
- Creative Curriculum Guide
- Healthy Children Healthy Weights- Rings of Fun
- Pint Size Produce Farm to ECE Activities