About

The Montana Harvest of the Month program showcases Montana grown foods in Montana communities. Montana Harvest of the Month is open to K-12 schools, afterschool programs, Summer Food Service Programs, early care and education facilities, producers, businesses, farmers markets, foodbanks and healthcare institutions in Montana.

Each month, participating sites focus on promoting one locally grown item (e.g., winter squash) by serving it in at least one meal, snack, or a la carte offering, and displaying or distributing HOM materials. Additionally, schools and early care and education settings participate by offering taste tests to students and doing educational lessons and activities.

Montana Harvest of the Month is a perfect way to launch or grow a farm to school or farm to cafeteria program as it provides an easy framework to follow and ready-to-use materials. Participating sites will receive a free packet of materials (includes posters and cafeteria, educator, and home handouts) as well as guides, additional resources, and training.

The two primary goals for this program are to expose children and adults to new, healthy foods and to support Montana’s farmers and ranchers. Shown below is the calendar of items.

How it Works

Montana Harvest of the Month Products

Why MT Harvest of the Month?

Increases communication and collaboration within and outside of the HOM site

Provides an easy framework to start or grow farm to plate

Supports local economies, agriculture, and existing wellness efforts in your community

Creates a method for engaging families and community members in nutrition education and healthy eating

Increases a community’s interest in trying new foods

This program is a collaboration between the Montana Office of Public Instruction, Montana Team Nutrition Program, National Center for Appropriate Technology, Montana State University Extension, Gallatin Valley Farm to School, FoodCorps Montana, and Montana Department of Agriculture.

Funds were provided in part by USDA Team Nutrition Training grants, USDA funds, USDA Farm to School grants, Montana Healthcare Foundation, Northern Pulse Growers Association, Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, Montana School Nutrition Association, Montana Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant, Montana Grains Foundation, Dairy MAX, and Montana Pulse Crop Committee.

Project evaluation is led by Dr. Carmen Byker Shanks of the Food and Health Lab at Montana State University. Original artwork was created by Anthony Maughan.