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Understanding participation in farm to school programs: Results integrating school and supply-side factors

Elizabeth R. Botkins and Brian E. Roe

Food Policy, 2018, vol. 74, issue C, 126-137

Abstract: Despite their status as the largest and most systematic of government programs to promote local foods in the US, few studies identify the factors that are associated with the school district decision to participate in farm to school (FTS) programs. We are the first to leverage the USDA’s Farm to School Census to analyze factors associated with FTS participation, the types of FTS activities implemented, and the challenges faced by participating school districts. Because a school’s participation is circumscribed by access to local foods, we control for the supply of local foods. We use spatially articulate data to estimate the spatial spillover effects of FTS participation. The results demonstrate that both school characteristics and local farm production factors are associated with FTS participation. The estimated spatial spillover effect is positive suggesting that areas with a high penetration of FTS activities have lower barriers associated with implementing FTS programs.

Keywords: Farm to school; Local foods; Spatial spillover; Policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I12 Q13 Q18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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