Farm to University Guide for Extension Agents

— Written By

Farm to University Programming Guides

North Carolina’s colleges and universities are creating demand for local food products. Navigating the university food service system can be challenging for farmers. Often university dining service staff have little experience working directly with farmers and campus advocates do not know how to connect farmers to the university. Extension Agents and community advocates can provide support to farm to university programs through training, facilitation, and farmer preparation.

TWO GUIDES ARE AVAILABLE TO HELP WITH FARM TO UNIVERSITY PROGRAMMING.

These two guides build off of over five years of work with North Carolina campus communities in conjunction with two NC 10% Campaign project collaborations: UFoods (University Food Systems) and the Local Food Ambassador Program.

The UFoods How it Works Handbook: A Guide to University Food Systems & Local Food Programs is a comprehensive resource on farm to university programming. The handbook provides resources and showcases examples of local food initiatives at various NC college campuses. How it Works Handbook cover image

The handbook contains:

  • structure of the university dining system
  • various pathways through which locally-grown food can reach campus community members
  • steps for successful campus local food programs
  • campus engagement strategies & tools
  • examples of successful farm to university projects

The handbook can be found at:

How It Works Handbook: A Guide to University Food Systems & Local Food Programs

The Farm to University Guide for Extension Agents (LF-017) provides farm to university resources relevant to County Extension Agent programming. F2U cover image

The guide includes:

  • Benefits of Farm to University Work
  • Understanding University Food Service, condensed
    • Roles and Influencers in the University Food System
    • Contracts and Compliance
    • Local Food Pathways
  • Identifying and Preparing Farmers
  • Campus Outreach and Education
  • Training and Facilitating Campus Local Food Teams
  • Reporting Farm to University Work
  • Statewide and National Resources for Selling to Wholesale and University Markets

The guide can be found at:

Farm to University: Guide for Extension Agents

Additional information on farm to university programming.

Program funding to create these guides was provided by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) and Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SARE) out of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Contact Robyn Stout, robyn_stout@ncsu.edu, NC 10% Campaign State Coordinator with any questions.