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Today, after introducing The New Hampshire Farm to School Reimbursement Policy Bill (HB 1657) to the House Education Committee-- a bill that will increase healthy local food options available to New Hampshire school children, build supply chain resiliency, and support the New Hampshire economy by increasing the amount of food New Hampshire schools purchase from local farms-- Rep. Alexis Simpson (D-Exeter), prime sponsor of HB 1657, releases the following statement:

“With this policy, we can improve the health and well-being of our children and the resiliency of our local food system. The Department of Education’s Office of Nutrition Programs and Services would provide a monetary incentive to schools who choose to direct more of their ‘per meal’ USDA cash reimbursement funds toward purchases from New Hampshire and New England farmers. The state would encourage this channeling of federal funds into the local economy by awarding schools $1 for every $3 spent on food from New Hampshire and $1 for every $6 spent on food from the New England region. The goal is for our local schools to be purchasing at least 10 % of their food from local farms.”

Rep. Megan Murray (D-Amherst), co-sponsor of HB 1657, adds:

“Though the bill does not place educational requirements in statute, the passage of HB 1657 would allow New Hampshire school communities the opportunity to integrate learning that provides real-world scenarios to meet educational goals and standards of learners today. Farming touches all sorts of topics like climate resiliency, aquaculture, agriculture, hydroponics, composting, and so many other state-of-the-art growing practices that require a high degree of science education behind them - a natural connection to learning communities while simultaneously supporting locally sourced, nutrient dense foods locally and regionally is exactly the type of connection N.H. learners need.”

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