Food Hubs Help Supply Iowa Schools with Local Food

The Iowa Food Hub Managers Working Group released a report on the impacts of the Local Produce and Protein Program (LPPP) grant on Iowa’s food hubs. This grant, funded by the CARES Act, helped Iowa children at 80 schools and early care centers eat healthy local food last fall. According to the report, schools in 53 of Iowa’s 99 counties used an LPPP grant to purchase local food. Of the $225,000 reimbursed to schools for food procurement, 51% was spent at food hubs. Food hubs served 52 unique farm to school customers in 2020. Of these, 52% were new hub customers, and all of these new customers were spending grant funds, demonstrating how the LPPP incentivized schools to buy local food for the first time. The report also noted that schools purchased an additional $111,689 of local food from hubs last year using non-grant funds, amplifying the impact of the grant.