School kids in 47 of the state’s school systems will be enjoying locally grown strawberry goodness in the coming weeks as part of North Carolina’s Farm to School program. Schools placed orders for a total of 12,813 flats of strawberries.
The NCDA&CS Food Distribution Division began delivering the flats to participating schools last week, and will continue deliveries this week and May 18-22. Strawberries are one of the more popular commodities offered through the program geared at getting locally grown fruits and vegetables into the schools. (Oddly, they are more preferred by school children than broccoli.)
Strawberries are being provided by Jackson Farms of Autryville, Cottle Farms of Faison, Lewis Nursery of Rocky Point, Patterson Farms of China Grove, T.C. Smith Produce of Seven Springs and Fresh-Pik Produce of Kenly.
Some schools will have strawberries on the menu during each of the three weeks, while others only ordered a week’s worth of berries.
Participating schools are: Alamance-Burlington Schools, Alexander County Schools, Alleghany County, Anson County, Ashe County, Asheboro City, Avery County, Brunswick County, Cabarrus County, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City, Chatham County, Cherokee County, Craven County, Cumberland County, Davie County, Edenton-Chowan, Fort Bragg, Franklin County, Gaston County, Guilford County, Halifax County, Harnett County, Henderson County, Hickory City Schools, Hoke County, Johnston County, Kannapolis City, Moore County, Mooresville Graded, Mount Airy City, Nash-Rocky Mount, Newton-Conover City, Northampton County, Pamlico County, Perquimans County, Randolph County, Rowan-Salisbury, Southmont Elementary, Stanly County, Stokes County, Surry County, Wake County, Watauga County, Wilkes County and Yadkin County.
A bit of trivia — North Carolina has two “official” berries. In 2001, the General Assembly designated the strawberry as the state’s official Red Berry and the blueberry as the official Blue Berry.