- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 9, 2014

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York is among eight states chosen to participate in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s pilot project supporting the purchase of locally sourced produce by school lunch programs.

Congressman Chris Gibson, a member of the House Agriculture Committee, advocated for inclusion of the farm-to-school initiative in the federal Farm Bill. He said he’ll work with farmers and educators in the Hudson Valley and Catskills to establish new farm-to-school partnerships in the coming year.

The New York State Office of General Services will administer the procurement project, which allows school districts to use a portion of their USDA Foods program funding to purchase unprocessed fruits and vegetables directly.

Other states participating are California, Connecticut, Michigan, Oregon, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

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