Name Change Gives Local Products Challenge a Farm Fresh Perspective
Child holds up sticker for local farm fresh

The Texas Department of Agriculture’s (TDA) Local Products Challenge has a new name — the Farm Fresh Challenge. Since 2013, TDA’s challenge has recognized schools that include more local products in their October menus. Participation in the challenge has grown each year and in 2017, more than 175 school districts took the Farm Fresh Challenge.


The name change makes the Farm Fresh Challenge an easily recognized part of the Farm Fresh Initiative. Kids love to try local foods and TDA’s Farm Fresh Challenge resources give schools an exciting way to promote Texas agriculture and the local flavor they add to school menus.

Take the Farm Fresh Challenge!

Registering for the challenge is easy and any TDA contracting entity (CE) in the National School Lunch Program can participate. The challenge requires schools to complete all of the following in October:

  • Serve a minimum of three different meal components from local sources 

  • Complete two Farm Fresh educational activities.

A Farm Fresh educational opportunity is any activity that educates students about local food and agriculture.
Activity examples include:
Taste testing local products
Field trips to a farm or farmers market
Meet the Farmer days
Garden-based learning activities
Classroom lessons focused on local food and agriculture.

You may use one of TDA’s Farm Fresh Fridays celebration ideas and resources or create your own.

Click here  to register for the 2018 Farm Fresh Challenge.

Participation Overview

The Farm Fresh Challenge participation pledge should be completed by the CE, not individual school campuses.

Basic Steps

Step 1: Take the Farm Fresh Challenge pledge.

-- CEs that pledge participation will receive Farm Fresh Fridays support materials from TDA. See the participation pledge for more information.
-- Register by July 15 to ensure you receive a participation toolkit.

Step 2: Submit the participation attestation form by the deadline. 

Step 3: Tell TDA about your celebration!


TDA will recognize all child nutrition programs that complete the challenge and submit the attestation form. This form collects information about local products served, dollars spent on Texas products and details about educational opportunities offered. 

Visit the resources tab for ideas and materials

For more information about Farm Fresh Fridays or the Farm Fresh Challenge, please contact TDA at FarmFresh@TexasAgriculture.gov.

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