Organic, Plant-Forward, Scratch Cooked School Meals

A California Case Study

Feeding children well creates healthier people. Fresh, local, organic food benefits land, economies and farmers. Transforming meals transforms community for the better. Conscious Kitchens work. We’re excited to share our Conscious Kitchen journey over the past 8 years and values-based, climate-friendly proof of concept with this just-released study in collaboration with Friends of the Earth — Organic, Plant-Forward, Scratch Cooked School Meals: A California Case Study. It spotlights Conscious Kitchens in three schools that implement our school food service model, rooted in providing 100% organic, scratch-cooked, plant-forward school meals in low-waste kitchens.

Serving over three quarters of a million meals (and counting) to a diverse group of students with our Conscious Kitchen model, this report covers how we teach, train and build long-term lasting capacity within schools and establish replicable, scalable systems and supply chains. All of this is critical to shift paradigms, improve health outcomes, expand organic agriculture and combat food insecurity.

We hope and fully believe this case study and its key strategies, learnings and recommendations will inspire action at grassroots, district and policy levels, focus investment and advocacy efforts where it matters most, and support a comprehensive transformation of school food with clear, far-reaching and lasting health, ecological, economic, and social benefits.

Our partners at Friends of the Earth note, “As schools across the nation grapple with how to feed kids healthier, more sustainable food on tight budgets, an inspiring story from Northern California provides a roadmap for change.” We invite you to read the report and executive summary, as well as watch the video presentation and webinar linked to below, and please continue to support our work.

Conscious Kitchen stands firm in our commitment to lead, evolve and adapt. Times of crisis need not mean the end of values-based procurement and practices. Rather, we have opportunity to innovate, lay new groundwork and build strategies for longterm success through unforeseen times. Onwards together!

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