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District Five Student Nutrition wins USDA Best Practice award for second consecutive year

IRMO, SC - The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded the Student Nutrition department in Lexington-Richland School District Five the Best Practice award within Child Nutrition Programs for Customer Service. This marks the second consecutive year District Five has received this award.

District Five has demonstrated a commitment to the procurement and promotion of South Carolina produce in all schools. The Farm to Five program has expanded local food offerings in schools, engaged students into eating more local produce and poultry, launched effective school gardening and experimental learning opportunities, trained food service personnel in the preparation of fresh produce, and facilitated the integration of nutrition and agriculture-based learning across the school curriculum.

Funding from Blue Cross Blue Shield SC Foundation, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, has allowed the district to further efforts improving the health of student population, while also responding to the community’s need of food security during summer months with the launch of a mobile food truck, the first of its kind in the state of South Carolina. USDA has recognized the district for the innovative Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) Food Truck conversion to provide excellent customer service. The food truck allowed the number of summer meals increase from 4,000 three years ago to 61,000 this year.

“No matter how far out your dreams are, it is possible with hard work and dedication,” said District Five Director of Student Nutrition Todd Bedenbaugh. “I continue to dream and do not give up. We continue to try to be the best Student Nutrition program in the entire country. Winning the USDA Best Practice Award for the second consecutive year helps to signify that everyone in Student Nutrition is working hard to provide quality customer service in District Five of Lexington and Richland Counties.”

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