Our community is made up of eaters, students, families, teachers, board members, agencies and non-profit partners, enthusiastic volunteers and others who are inspired by healthy, locally-grown food that strengthens farms and local economies. Check out the tips and resources on this page to start or expand a project where you work and live!

How to Get Started

Building a community team with administration and food service representatives is the first step of any Farm to Institution effort.

Is Your Food Service Self-Operated or Contracted?

What type of entity manages and procures the food for the meals served in your institution? "Self-operated", as the word implies, means the service is provided within the institution's operations. Many institutions choose to out-source by contracting with a Food Service Management Company (FSMC), such as Aramark, Sodexo, Whitsons, Compass or their subsidiaries. We need to better understand the operations of FSMCs and how we can have a significant impact on their procurement of regionally produced foods. Check out the research and reports on FSMCs from Farm to Institution New England (FINE).