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8th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Moving Forward Together


The 8th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Moving Forward Together will convene a diverse group of stakeholders from across the farm to cafeteria movement working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America.

WHO
The conference will be attended by more than 1,500 food service professionals, farmers and food producers, educators, policy makers, entrepreneurs, students and youth leaders, representatives from nonprofits and government agencies, public health professionals, and others engaged in the farm to cafeteria movement. The term “farm to cafeteria” encompasses all efforts to bring healthy, locally sourced food, nutrition and agriculture education opportunities to institutional cafeteria settings. This includes but is not limited to public and private early care and education settings, K-12 schools, colleges/universities, hospitals and prisons. The conference is designed to appeal to beginners and veterans of the movement alike, and attendees will come from across the nation and Canada, and from a variety of diverse backgrounds.

WHAT
The conference program officially begins on Friday, June 3 and will include 40+ workshops in a variety of topical tracks and formats, exciting plenary addresses delivered by leaders in the farm to cafeteria and local food movements, networking opportunities, a series of 5-minute “lightning talks,” a poster session and resource share fair, entertainment options and an evening reception showcasing Madison’s vibrant local food culture. Pre-conference events will take place on Thursday, June 2 and will include field trips to innovative Wisconsin farms and institutions, short course options, and networking sessions and informal gatherings. Pre-conference field trips and short courses require additional registration fees.

WHEN
June 2-4, 2016. Pre-conference events, including field trips and short courses, will take place on Thursday, June 2. The conference will kick off on Friday, June 3 and run through Saturday, June 4. The conference is held every-other year, so the last conference was in 2014 and the next conference will be in 2018.

WHERE
Madison, Wisconsin! The conference will be held at Monona Terrace, a 250,000-square foot conference facility on the shores of Lake Monona designed by famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Read more about Monona Terrace and Madison here.

WHY
Because together, we have the power to affect great change! Cafeterias in schools, universities, prisons, hospitals and childcare centers serve more than 40 million Americans every day during the school year, placing the farm to cafeteria movement at the forefront of the fight to end obesity and strengthen local food systems. Think of it this way: A single school district often feeds more people in a day than all of a city’s restaurants combined. The National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is the only national gathering of stakeholders from across the farm to cafeteria movement, making it the premiere opportunity to learn, network and collaborate with likeminded leaders from across the country!