A Regional Forum on Healthy, Climate-Friendly School Food
Greening School Food

A Regional Forum on Healthy, Climate-Friendly School Food

Los Angeles, CA, October 2018

Kicking off National Farm to School Month, Friends of the Earth and our local partner, Occidental Urban and Environmental Policy Institute, convened an historic Greening School Food Forum on Healthy, Climate Friendly Foodservice in Los Angeles on October 1, 2018. The event brought together nearly 120 school food and nutrition services directors and staff, sustainability coordinators, government representatives, parents, school board members and representatives from health and environmental organizations.  Foodservice leaders from San Diego, L.A., Riverside, Santa Barbara and Capistrano school districts shared inspiring stories about how they are overcoming real challenges to reduce food waste, purchase local and organic produce and offer more plant-forward, climate-friendly meals. National and regional nonprofits shared resources and policy strategies for scaling up climate-friendly school food. Many roundtable discussions encouraged cross-fertilization across districts throughout the region.  Slides from all the presentations are below.

This is the second in a series of regional forums aimed at building a national movement to leverage the immense food purchasing power of schools to measurably reduce climate emissions while serving healthier food. We thank our partners and co-sponsors: One Meal a Day for the Planet, Food Forward, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, Reducetarian Summit and Chef Anne Foundation. Future forums are scheduled to take place in New York and Maryland in 2019. Please contact us for more information.

Press advisory


Iesha Siler – LA Food Policy Council. Watch video here.

Presenters’ slides:

Overview: Why Climate-Friendly School Food?

Kari Hamerschlag – Friends of the Earth, The Environmental Case for Climate-Friendly School Food. Watch video here.
Lauren Pitts – Forward Food,  Powering Up with Plant-Strong Entrees. Watch video here.
D’Artagnan Scorza – Social Justice Learning Institute. Watch video here.

Climate-Friendly Foodservice: Stories from the Region

Jen Dalton, Friends of the Earth, Scaling Up Climate-Friendly School Food: Strategies for Success. Watch video here.
Kirsten Roloson,  Riverside Unified School District. Watch video here.
Fred Espinoza,  San Diego Unified School District. Watch video here.
Nancy Weiss, 
Santa Barbara Unified School District. Watch video here.
Manish Singh, Los Angeles Unified School District. Watch video here.
Kristen Hilleman,  Capistrano Unified School District. Watch video here.


Suzy Amis Cameron, MUSE School & One Meal a Day for the Planet, Climate-Friendly Food. Watch video here.

First Steps, Next Steps: Resources for Change

Paula Daniels, Center for Good Food Purchasing. Watch video here.
Barbara Cole Gates, Lean & Green Kids. Watch video here.
Sharon Palmer, Meatless Mondays. Watch video here.
Leyla Marandi, CA Thursdays. Watch video here.
Lauren Pitts, Forward Food. Watch video here.
Desiree Rojo, CA Department of Education. Watch video here.
Gabby Warner, Chef Ann Foundation. Watch video here.
Maggie Neola, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Watch video here.

School Food directors talk about their favorite recipes and how to engage kids in climate-friendly food

Kristen Hilleman, Capistrano Unified School District
Kirsten Roloson, Riverside Unified School District
Nancy Weiss, Santa Barbara Unified School District

Resources provided: