You’ve heard about the farm to table movement but have you introduced it to your kids? Try one or more of these fun farm to tale activities to get started.
Kids like mine, that live in the city, often don’t know where their food comes from before it appears on their plates. So, there are fun ways to educate kids about the origins of their food, how food is processed (or not), the benefits of buying local food, nutrition, and healthy eating.
Farm to Table Activities for Kids
- Plant a kitchen garden.
This is one of the best ways to introduce your children to the “farm” part of farm to table. Starting with seeds, growing plants, and harvest produce, children learn so much about foods by planting and cultivating a backyard garden. See ideas for gardening with kids on Pinterest.
(Alternatively, plant a garden in a nearby community garden.)
Get your kids involved in using your garden harvest — try making recipes such as pesto, salsa, veggie sticks, pickles, zoodles, or salads.
- Join a local food co-op.
We’ve done both a pick it up food cooperative and delivery one. Either works to provide your family with fresh, seasonal, locally grown produce. Involve your children in preparing delicious, fresh produce recipes.
- Shop at a farmer’s market.
I love the fun of a farmer’s market. Don’t you? It’s a great way to see what veggies and fruits are in season as well as sample (and buy) delicious foods. It’s also a wonderful opportunity to teach kids why you prioritize buying locally. When you return home and eat the food you just bought from a farmer, it cements the farm to table learning. Erica at What Do We Do All Day shares 5 activities for kids to do at the Farmer’s Market.
- Try a cooking local or farm to table class or camp.
Look for classes like this one from ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch, these summer camp classes from The Kitchen at Middleground Farms, or these offerings from Broadturn Farm to help children learn to grow, prepare, and cook healthy, local, sustainable food.
- Visit a food factory or processing plant.
We recently visited La Raquelitas Tortillas in Denver, Colorado. It’s the most amazing company that not only boasts locally sourced non-GMO corn, but it makes the most delicious food!
We tried out the food at the factory (chips and tortillas) then went to lunch at a nearby restaurant that served La Raquelitas tortillas.
You’ll have to do some research to discover where you can visit. We knew the owner of Raquelitas so were able to schedule a tour. Often restaurants who use local food will share the local sources they use for their kitchens. Use these lists for ideas of places to visit with your kids. For example, Super Healthy Kids wrote a blog post about a field trip visit to Driscoll’s Berries.
Here’s a bit of our tortilla factory tour experience:
We saw large baking and cooking vats where the corn is transformed.
Once cooked, the corn becomes masa. The gluten-free and flour chips and tortillas are a different process and separate cooking lines.
(I’ve mixed up a bit of the photos — some are corn, some are flour. But you get the gist.)
Then masa is put into a machine that punches out round tortillas. Cool, right?
The tortillas are cooked, cooled, and packaged.
After the tour was the yummiest part of the day — TASTE testing the food!
We visited a local restaurant that served street tacos using the tortillas from La Raquelitas. DELICIOUS!!
My kids made a movie of the experience! (Nice literacy and technology tie in, right?!)