Lunch with a Farmer at Bedwell Elementary

Lunch with a Farmer at Bedwell Elementary
Posted on 10/02/2023
Bedwell Student

The week of September 25, 2023, was Farm to School Week in New Jersey and the Somerset Hills School District celebrated  Jersey Fresh produce with students throughout the district.

Prior to that, on September 19th, a Farmer’s Market was held at Bernardsville Middle School where students had the opportunity to select perfectly ripe peaches, gorgeous beefsteak tomatoes, delicious scallions, crunchy red peppers, and an array of greens such as zucchini, cucumbers, and parsley. 

On September 29th, Bedwell Elementary School hosted a Lunch with a Farmer event.  Farmer/Production Supervisor Rebekah Alstede, from Alstede Farms in Chester, NJ, was joined by Nicole Broadwater and Carmen Francesco from the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. It was all hands on deck while the trio, along with Maschio’s chef and kitchen staff prepared an array of Jersey Fresh offerings. Bedwell students were able to sample street corn ribs, rainbow salad, and zucchini panzanella, in addition to an apple tasting menu that was on point with the recent arrival of fall. 

The Lunch with a Farmer experience was well received. The children asked a lot of astute questions about jobs on a farm, various crops, fresh fruit and vegetable choices, and the farm-to-table process; it was not only fun, but educational! Creating that dialog and understanding where one’s food comes from, is an important aspect of healthy living, as well as sustainability. 

The event was organized by Denise Menza, Maschio’s Food Service Supervisor. “I am very passionate about farm-to-school initiatives,” said Menza. “Maschio’s will be bringing Jersey Fresh fruits and vegetables to all of its districts this year, and there will be new, chef-inspired recipes featured each month at the schools as well. I am very proud of this event at Bedwell as the students showed a huge amount of interest in trying new and healthy food options!” 

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