Farming Families

on Wednesday, 03 January 2018. Posted in Blog & News

No matter who you are, there is almost always some sort of experience that sticks out in your mind from your childhood. Several of my standout memories revolve around agriculture and farming. Growing up with a Dad and Grandad who were both Washington Potato Farmers, gave me an opportunity to experience things that many others didn’t get to. Even though I was probably more trouble than actual help, my Dad would take me and my little red shovel out to go change water with him. I’ll never forget the countless trips out to the farm with my Dad, so that he didn’t have to go check the fields alone. Over the years, it became evident that Farmers not only in Washington, but likely across the world have a phenomenal work ethic and commitment to their jobs. Farmers sacrifice so many activities and take many risks to provide our world with quality products. I cannot begin to tell you how many softball tournaments, parties and other events my father has had to miss out on because he had to stay home and watch the potato fields all summer long. There is no such thing as a sick or off day for a Farmer during their crop season. I will always be grateful to both my Dad and Grandad for the sacrifices they have made for not only our family, but also for our community and providing us with the highest quality potatoes possible. – Tressa Radach

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Encouraging school foodservice operators to use more poatoes

Encouraging school foodservice operators to use more poatoes

As America’s Favorite Vegetable, potatoes can help provide students with the nutrients and energy they need to do their best during the school day. That’s why it’s important to remind school foodservice operators that potatoes are not only delicious, but also cost-effective and a nutritious addition to the school menu. In partnership with the School Nutrition Association (SNA), two webinars featured potatoes.  The first webinar, “Maximize Your Menus and Minimize Labor Constraints with Potatoes”, showcased potatoes through on-trend, student-friendly menu innovations and solutions to ease labor strains. The second webinar, “Fun Summer Feeding with Potatoes”, showcased how putting potatoes at the center of the plate can enhance summer feeding programs in fresh and fun ways. Both webinars included a live cooking demonstration with Potatoes USA Culinary Director Chef RJ Harvey, RD and Award-Winning Author Dayle Hayes, MS, RD. The demonstrations were pre-recorded in the Potatoes USA Spud Lab and were a big hit with the participants. Webinars Key Takeaways: Nutritional benefits of potatoes at an affordable price How potatoes can limit food waste Ways potatoes can take over as the center of the plate How serving potatoes to children over the summer can be fun Upon webinar completion, attendees were able to earn continuing education credits. All recipes and resources utilized in the webinar are available on the SNA website for future download. Following are some quotes from the operators who were very engaged in the webinar chat. “My favorite Webinar I’ve seen so far this year. VERY helpful and insightful. Well Done!”  “Love Dayle and RJ as a team. Can they please start a cooking youtube series? ‘Dayle and RJ: Potatoes for All!’” “Great webinar, gained new ideas for using potatoes. Thank you!” SNA is recognized as the authority on school nutrition and utilizes weekly webinars to educate their 50,000+ members. For more information on K-12 School Foodservice marketing activities, email potatoesraisethebar@potatoesusa.com.

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WSDA Resilient Food System Infrastructure Grant Program

WSDA Resilient Food System Infrastructure Grant Program

Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) recently opened the application period for the Resilient Food System Infrastructure (RFSI) Grant. This one-time grant program is funded by USDA and is designed to bolster the middle of Washington’s food supply chain. The program aims to enhance local and regional food systems by supporting activities like aggregation, processing, manufacturing, storage, transportation, wholesaling, and distribution. Eligible entities include agricultural producers, processors, non-profit organizations, for-profit entities meeting SBA small business size standards, local and tribal governments, and institutions like schools and hospitals. Priority will be given to projects that benefit underserved and socially disadvantaged farmers, small and veteran-owned businesses, and projects that expand processing, aggregation, and distribution capacities. The application period opened on May 30, 2024, and closes on July 15, 2024 at 5:00 PM. WSDA is offering extensive support to help applicants through the process. This includes assistance from the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and dedicated office hours every Tuesday and Thursday leading up to the application deadline. Visit the RFSI webpage for more information about what’s available. If you need assistance, please visit the RSI website. WSDA will also be available with office hours of every Tuesday 10am through July 9th and every Thursday at 2pm through June 27th (no office hours on July 4th holiday)

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