New Mexico Food & Farms and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony set for Feb. 6

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Baylee Banks
Communications Assistant, New Mexico Department of Agriculture
bbanks@nmda.nmsu.edu
575-646-1864

Jan. 29, 2020

New Mexico Food & Farms and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony set for Feb. 6

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Cutline: Attendees gather in the Rotunda of the State Capitol Building during the 2017 Food & Farms Day and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony. This year’s event is Feb. 6 at the Rotunda of the State Capitol Building in Santa Fe from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Cutline: Attendees gather in the Rotunda of the State Capitol Building during the 2017 Food & Farms Day and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony. This year’s event is Feb. 6 at the Rotunda of the State Capitol Building in Santa Fe from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. (Photos courtesy New Mexico Public Education Department)

SANTA FE – Several awards will be presented at the eighth annual New Mexico Food & Farms Day and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony Thursday, Feb. 6 in Santa Fe.

The ceremony recognizes contributions to, and active participation in, New Mexico’s local food and farm to school programs. Held from 9 to 10 a.m. in the Rotunda of the State Capitol Building, the event will celebrate continuous statewide efforts to expand and strengthen connections between New Mexico’s local food and education systems. The event is free to the public.?

New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte, New Mexico Secretary of Education Ryan Stewart, Sen. Linda Lopez and Sen. Shannon Pinto will present the following awards:

  • School Nutrition Program of the Year award: Gadsden Independent School District
  • Farm to School Program of the Year award: Zuni Public School District
  • Farmers’ Market of the Year award: Tucumcari Farmers’ Market
  • Organization of the Year award: Agri-Cultura Network
  • Farmer of the Year award: Dorothy Bitsilly, Red Willow Farm, Navajo Nation

Stakeholders and advocates for student nutrition and farm to school around the state include the New Mexico Department of Agriculture, New Mexico Public Education Department, New Mexico Department of Health, New Mexico Farm to School Alliance, New Mexico Farmers’ Marketing Association, New Mexico Food and Agriculture Policy Council, New Mexico School Nutrition Association, Hunger Coalition and Hunger Caucus.

“I congratulate all award recipients for their outstanding efforts in getting New Mexico-grown foods into our state’s school cafeterias,” New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte said. “It’s an honor to attend the New Mexico Food & Farms Day and School Nutrition Awards Ceremony and to have the opportunity to present this year’s Farmers’ Market of the Year Award to Tucumcari Farmers’ Market.”

“Our Farm to Schools programs not only bring the world of agriculture alive for our students, they also increase access to fresh, healthy food for families, which is a crucial strategy in closing the educational opportunity gap,” New Mexico Secretary of Education Ryan Stewart said. “Congratulations to all of the award winners – we appreciate your service to our schools.”

For more information about the New Mexico Food and Farms and School Nutrition Day Awards Ceremony, email Kendal Chavez at kendal.chavez@state.nm.us or call 505-827-1807.

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