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Hastings School District 200 is one of those participating in Farm to School Month

Hastings School District is one of the many school districts throughout the state participating in Farm to School Month in Minnesota this September. Schools from all regions of the state will be taking part in the activities that connect K-12 students with healthy, fresh food grown locally.

Participating schools will serve a wide range of foods from nearby farms ranging from sweet corn, cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers to cantaloupe and watermelon, among others. Many schools will also provide hands-on educational opportunities for students and community activities.

Farm to School offers Minnesota farm fresh foods for K-12 students, keeping more of the state's "food dollars" circulating in the local economy, and supporting the region's many small and mid-size farmers. After Farm to School Month, many schools will continue their Farm to School efforts throughout the year.

In addition to Hastings, other school districts in the Twin Cities area that are participating in Farm to School include: Minneapolis, St. Paul, Anoka-Hennepin, Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan, Buffalo, Osseo, South Washington County, Robbinsdale, Mounds View, Lakeville, Stillwater, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Chaska, Maple Grove and Minnetonka.

This fall, Hastings schools are also meeting or exceeding new nutrition standards in their hot lunch programs. The new federal standards require that meals are healthy, well-balanced and provide students all the nutrition they need to succeed at school.

School meals offer students milk, fruits and vegetables, proteins and grains, and they must meet strict limits for saturated fat and portion size.

"We're always working to offer Hastings students healthier and tastier choices," said Hastings Director of Food and Nutrition Services Mary Paula Deane. "In addition to meeting new nutrition standards, we're also going to offer fresh local produce as long as the growing season allows."

School meals are a great value and a huge convenience for busy families, she said. This year school lunch prices will be $2.15 for elementary students, $2.30 for middle school students and $2.45 for senior high students. Parents may prepay online at: This is also a link on the district's website.