Farm to school provides economic development opportunities to producers (e.g., farmers, ranchers, fishers), laborers, distributors, processors, cooks and foodservice staff, as well as others who support the local food system. Farm to school activities can help build long-term economic vitality by creating demand for local food products. Success in this sector is measured via local and regional economic impact, market opportunities, income generation, and social capital.
According to research conducted by Ecotrust in the report The Impact of Seven Cents, and updated in 2015, for each $1.00 spent on local school food purchases excluding fluid
milk and butter, a total of $2.00 of economic activity is generated in the
Oregon state economy. This calculator automatically does that math, allowing a school district to visualize the total economic activity generated by their hypothetical or actual local purchases.