Juneau schools serve Alaska local foods

The Juneau School District celebrated Alaska Local Food Day with special menus in schools Wednesday.

Students were offered Alaska- grown barley cereal from Delta Junction for breakfast, as well as baked Alaska coho salmon from Taku Smokeries and coleslaw made with carrots and cabbage from Charlie’s Produce of the Matanuska-Susitna Valley during lunch.

Part of National Food Day and National Farm to School Month, Alaska Local Food Day celebrates local, healthy, affordable and sustainable foods. It is a collaborative effort between the Alaska Departments of Education and Early Development, Natural Resources, and Health and Social Services.

This school year, the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development is helping school districts purchase Alaska foods by providing reimbursements for products that are grown, caught or harvested in Alaska.

This week’s coho salmon from Southeast Alaska was purchased locally through Juneau’s Taku Smokeries.

This is part of a larger, ongoing effort of the JSD’s food service program.

The district has offered local foods processed by Trident Seafoods and Taco Loco in the past; and, with the funding provided by DCCED will be able to offer a wider variety of local foods more often during the 2012-13 school year.

In September, carrots and sugar snap peas from Merry Weather Farms of Gustavus were featured at select sites, and fish from Trident Seafoods has been offered at all schools for the past two months.

Future menu items will include locally grown carrots and potatoes, rockfish and smoked salmon.

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