The Local Food for Schools Opportunity (LFS) is funding for states to assist in the supply chain disruption. The grant funds have been made available to schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program and Food Distribution. The funds are to be used to purchase unprocessed/minimally processed food grown/produced in NJ only. Below is a list of eligible schools that have opted into funding:
School Districts Opting Into Local Food for Schools Funding
Click here for a How to Guide Local Food for Schools
Schools must purchase unprocessed/minimally processed foods direct from a farmer/producer or vendor. Below is a resource list of vendors, familiar with the LFS funding, that can provide unprocessed/minimally processed NJ products:
Vendor Resource List
Socially Disadvantaged Resource List
*The resource list will be updated throughout the duration of the grant
Reference sheet for procurement
Federal Funds Procurement Method Selection Chart
Reference sheet for Food Service Management Companies with Fixed Price contract
Fixed Price Reference Sheet
Which programs can receive food purchased with LFS funding?
answer: Food purchased with LFS funding may only be served in the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program.
Do I need the farm/producer on the receipt?
answer: Yes, your receipt/purchase order should specify what farm/producer the item came from. Please write your RA# and school district on the receipt/purchase order with your signature.
What if I use a vendor who procures from multiple farmers?
answer: The vendors on our resource list have agreed to list the farms in which the food has been sourced on your invoice and/or catalog. You will be responsible for the reporting of each farm.
Will every invoice be reviewed?
answer: Yes, each invoice will be reviewed to verify the LFS funds have been used correctly. Invoices should be uploaded as a PDF & emailed to NJDALFS@ag.nj.gov
Can an invoice be rejected?
answer: Yes, if an invoice does not meet the parameters of the LFS the reimbursement will be denied.
Does the receipt need to be itemized?
answer: Yes, if purchasing from a small business that does not produce itemized receipts you can provide them a purchase order to complete.
What account will the grant funding be deposited into?
answer: The non-profit food service account. Schools should keep a separate accounting of the Local Food for Schools funds.
If we accept the funding and do not use it, is there a penalty?
answer: No, there is no penalty for not using the LFS funding.
Will the LFS funds be redistributed if not used?
answer: Yes, if an SFA has not used its funding, the NJDA Food & Nutrition will redistribute funding to those schools participating.
Do procurement rules apply?
answer: Yes, *the LFS funding may follow the informal and/or small purchase quotation procedures. Federal Funds Procurement Method Selection Chart
Where can we purchase unprocessed/minimally processed foods?
SFA's can purchase minimally processed foods direct from a farmer/producer or vendor. A resource list of vendors/farms who sell NJ products and are familiar with the LFS funding will be updated for the duration of the funding. SFA’s can locate NJ farms in by using the
I am an FSMC and we have a fixed-price contract, can we use this for main plate meals?
answer: Yes, please see the attached guidelines.
Can I use the Local Food for Schools funding to purchase milk?
answer: No - at this time, there the NJDA does not have any milk suppliers that meet the requirement of Jersey Fresh serving schools.
What if I do not know what farm my unprocessed/minimally processed food came from?
answer: The NJDA cannot reimburse you unless the receipt specifies what farm your product has come from. Please only purchase products that you can verify where they are grown/produced.
Find Jersey Fresh
Find Jersey Fresh is the search engine hosted by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture that allows you to find growers and distributors of wholesale New Jersey produce. You can search by business name, county or item. Please always call the business before visiting.
NJ Farm Bureau Directory of New Jersey Produce Growers
This directory of produce growers is searchable by produce name, town, farm name and county.
Visit NJ Farms
Search this database for farm activities, farmers markets, nursery/greenhouse, and pick-your-own.