Providing healthy, fair, and sustainable food
The Austin Independent School District has adopted the Good Food Purchasing Program, and is the first school district in the state to commit to purchasing food to promote the production and consumption of healthy, fair, and sustainable food.
The Program will have a positive impact for students, food vendors, workers, farmers, and other stakeholders in the area. Austin Independent School District serves approximately 75,000 meals per day and manages a $13 million annual food budget.
“With the Good Food Purchasing Program we saw the potential for helping the district advance its mission of supporting the achievement of all students by expanding food access, serving healthy tasty meals, and providing learning opportunities about nutrition, cultural food-ways, and the food system,” said Executive Director of Food Services Anneliese Tanner. “We do so in a way that also supports the local economy and environment.”
Since February 2019, the district has been following the program guidelines which follow a national, metrics-based, framework to help cities and public institutions shift their food purchases to support five core values: strong local economies, protecting the environment, worker rights, animal welfare, and nutrition.
AISD’s adoption of the Good Food Purchasing Program was the result of a three-year pilot program in which the school district worked alongside community groups and other public intuitions, including University of Texas at Austin, the convention center, and the City of Austin, to improve institutional food procurement.