February 22, 2013
Private Businesses Work with Torlakson's Team California
Initiative to Support Fresh Healthy Food for Monterey-Area Schools
SALINAS—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson's Team California for Healthy Kids initiative is at work on the ground in Monterey County, beginning with the recent addition of dozens of new salad bars in area schools, the Superintendent announced today.
Torlakson launched his statewide Team California for Healthy Kids initiative soon after taking office to promote healthy eating and physical activity throughout the day, including the important hours children spend in school. The initiative brings together schools and community support to ensure students have access to fresh water, healthy food, and physical activity.
"With Team California, we are working to help make the right choices the easy choices for kids," Torlakson said. "I've seen it first-hand, and it's been borne out in multiple studies: healthy and active students succeed more in school, and that's not only good for them and their families, but for our entire state. That's why I'm delighted to see so many local leaders stepping up in Monterey County to help schools provide healthy food in the cafeteria and get kids active."
In the Monterey area, Team California has been working with the Grower-Shipper Association and the United Fresh Foundation through a special campaign called "Let's Move Salad Bars to California Schools." Some 25 businesses have funded 30 new salad bars in Monterey County schools over the past few months at a cost of more than $78,000.
Margaret D'Arrigo-Martin, vice president of community development for Taylor Farms, donated one of the salad bars and helped gather donations from other area businesses. She said giving kids a healthy option for food during the day is one small step toward a healthier community.
"It takes all of us working together to build a safe, healthy community for our kids and their families," D'Arrigo-Martin said. "Schools are sometimes the only place for young people to have a nutritious meal—but schools can't do it alone. I know I speak for us and many businesses around Monterey when I say we're in this together and glad to help."
Team California has also been promoting Just Run, a physical fitness program geared toward children from kindergarten through high school. During the 2011-12 school year, 9,200 children participated in the program, logging more than 266,000 miles. Just Run is headquartered in Carmel under the umbrella of the Big Sur International Marathon.
"We've developed a free program to emphasize the importance of fitness and healthy eating in order to address the rise of physical inactivity and obesity rates," said Susan Love, Just Run program administrator. "Physical activity like running provides a great opportunity for kids to burn calories, boost their metabolism, and improve their concentration in and out of school. With exposure to healthy food and plenty of exercise, we're working to give kids the strong foundation they need to succeed."
The full list of salad bar donors to date follows, though additional donations are coming in regularly. More information about Team California for Healthy Kids and the "Let's Move Salad Bars to California Schools" efforts can be found online at Team California for Healthy Kids
United Fresh Produce Association [Note: The preceding link is no longer active.]. More information on the national "Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools" effort—part of former First Lady Michelle Obama's overall "Let's Move" campaign to improve children's health—can be found online at Let's Move! Salad Bars 2 Schools [http://saladbars2schools.org/]
. The full Just Run program can be viewed at Just Run | Running Events [http://www.justrun.org]
Salad Bar Donors
- Misionero Vegetables.
- Dole (5 salad bars).
- Tanimura & Antle.
- True Organic Products.
- Pro Act.
- Cambro Manufacturing Company.
- Mastronardi Produce.
- California Strawberry Commission.
- Mann Packing Company (2 salad bars).
- The Fresh Produce and Floral Council.
- Ocean Mist Farms.
- Church Brothers.
- Diane Tarp.
- Green Gate Fresh.
- Johnson & Moncrief PLC.
- Margaret D'Arrigo-Martin.
- Mary-Ellen Wright-Rano.
- Merrill Farms, LLC.
- O P Murphy & Sons.
- RC Farms Packing, LLC.
- Sakata Seed America, Inc.
- Taylor Farms California, Inc.
- The Nunes Company.
- Three Star Lettuce.
- Pacific International Marketing.
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Tom Torlakson —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100