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Farm to School Sourcing: Connecting with Small Farmers

California schools purchase nearly $200 million dollars in locally grown products, including organic fruits and veggies. These markets require specialized knowledge of food safety regulations, product specs, delivery, and bidding/contracting. This webinar, co-hosted by the Farm to Cafeteria program at CAFF, will discuss how farmers can access these markets in their regions with insights from an aggregator, a food service director and a farmer, from regions throughout the state.

Tuesday, October, 19

12 – 1:30pm PT


Scott Berndt, Food Hub Coordinator, Riverside Unified School District Food Hub, Riverside, CA
Scott Berndt grew up on a family farm in South Dakota. After moving to California and spending 30 years in hotel and restaurant management, Scott started the 2.5 acre Fox Farms in Riverside, where he sold to local school districts. When Riverside Unified School District launched their own food hub, Scott took the lead to oversee operations of purchasing and aggregating for Riverside Unified, neighboring districts, child care centers and restaurant customers.
Erin Primer, Director of Food Services - San Luis Coastal Unified School District, San Luis Obispo, CA
Erin Primer is the director of food services for San Luis Coastal Unified School District. She has 15 years of experience in the food service industry, ranging from high quality catering to fine dining. As a leader in the Farm-to-School movement in the Central Coast, Erin has worked to incorporate more local food from small farms and ranches into one of San Luis Obispo Counties largest school districts. @slcusdfood (Instagram)
Brandon Sanders, RobinSong Farms, Templeton, CA
Brandon Sanders is the owner/operator of RobinSong Farms in San Luis Obispo county. He and his wife, Roxanne, farm a few acres of vegetables, melon, and row crops for small and local wholesale outlets, including multiple school districts. The farm was established in 2015, and he is currently helping to establish a school farm program with a local district, and prior experience includes market gardening for a university's dining service.
Yousef Buzayan, Farm to Cafeteria Program Manager, Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) 
Yousef studied Agricultural Economics and International Ag Development at UC Davis and has interests in food systems and agricultural supply chains. As Farm to Cafeteria Program Manager, he provides technical expertise and assistance to farmers and foodservice operators on supply chain logistics, regulations, and best practices for Farm to Cafeteria sales. He has worked at farmers markets, served as a UC Davis agricultural ambassador and formerly directed the UC Davis Whole Earth Festival.