Farm to Early Care and Education Grantee Programs


To increase the number of early care and education (ECE) settings with successful Farm to ECE initiatives. 


To support states and communities in the development and growth of sustainable, equitable, comprehensive Farm to ECE initiatives. 


To provide guidance and leadership to participating states and communities through partner engagement, resources, trainings, networking, and custom technical assistance. 

Farm to Early Care and Education (ECE) programs are an innovative evidence-based approach that give young children increased exposure and access to local produce, opportunities to learn about nutrition and agriculture, and hands-on learning through gardening. 

Learn more about these efforts and the many benefits they provide including:

  • SHAPING HEALTHY HABITS FOR LIFE. Farm to ECE activities, like taste tests, cooking lessons, and gardening, offer repeated exposures to new, healthy foods, promoting lifelong healthy food preferences and eating patterns.
  • FAMILY & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT. Gardening and food-related activities are popular among families and create more opportunities for meaningful family engagement.
  • STRENGTHEN LOCAL FOOD SYSTEM. Purchasing local products creates market opportunities, promotes local and regional food systems, while food-based learning educates teachers and providers about healthy habits and their local food system.
  • EXPERIENTIAL EDUCATION. Farm to ECE can enhance the learning environment with hands-on learning, help achieve early learning standards, and support appropriate cognitive, emotional, social and physical development.

ASPHN’s Farm to ECE Grantee Programs

ASPHN is overseeing the following three Farm to ECE grantee programs. From initiating Farm to ECE programs in REACH communities, to supporting and building capacity in states across the nation, these programs are having a positive impact in their areas.


ASPHN’s Capacity Building Grant (CABBAGE) is working with four Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) recipients to build community-level Farm to ECE initiatives.



ASPHN’s Farm to Early Care and Education Implementation Grant (FIG) is funding farm to ECE work with 10 states and the District of Columbia to strengthen their state-level Farm to ECE initiatives with a specific equity focus.



ASPHN completed a 3-year mini CoIIN or Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network with 5 states (CO, AZ, AL, MN and OH) to further their Farm to ECE activities.


Farm To ECE Capacity Building Grant

With funding from CDC-DNPAO and in collaboration with National Farm to School Network (NFSN), ASPHN’s CABBAGE is offering a technical assistance (TA) and funding opportunity for Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) recipients to learn about and initiate local farm to ECE programs. The goal of this opportunity is to increase the quality of local ECE settings and increase access to healthy food and environments for young children.


EASTERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY (EMU) is working with immigrant and refugee populations in Battle Creek, MI. EMU is working with ECEs to integrate Farm to ECE curricula into lesson plans, build ECE gardens, and increase local foods offered in the ECE. They helped ECEs connect to local foods by supporting CSA delivery boxes and build Farm to ECE gardens. EMU’s work in 2 ECEs has impacted 96 children and 18 educators.

NATIONAL KIDNEY FOUNDATION OF MICHIGAN (NKFM) is working with Black and Latinx residents in 3 MI counties. NKFM is offering trainings, peer-to-peer learning, and collective problem solving to increase Farm to ECE knowledge, goal attainment, and local food purchasing. NKFM is also increasing ECE local food access by connecting them to local Black farmers and the 10 Cents a Meal reimbursement program. NKFM’s work in 4 ECEs has impacted 96 children and 15 educators.

PARTNERSHIP FOR HEALTHY LINCOLN (PHL) is redressing health disparities in Black and Hispanic communities in Lincoln, NE. PHL is helping ECEs create Harvest of the Month tastings, indoor and outdoor gardens, farmer connections and Farm to ECE-related family engagement. Additionally, PHL is working on making local food purchasing and delivery easy for farmers and ECEs. Their work in 4 ECEs has impacted 275 children, 38 educators and 5 local farmers.

Farm To ECE Implementation Grant

ASPHN’s FIG supports public health nutrition professionals by advancing Farm to ECE initiatives at the state level. The focus is to increase the capacity to facilitate long-term sustainable, comprehensive, and equitable Farm to ECE. Learn more about the states participating below.

Obesity Mini Collaborative Improvement & Innovation Network

The purpose of the 2019-2021 ASPHN Obesity Mini CoIIN was to support and enhance state level farm to ECE initiatives to increase access to healthy environments for young children by providing technical guidance and support for state teams.

All state teams focused on utilizing the CoIIN process to further their farm to ECE activities and had providers simultaneously include procurement and serving local food in the ECE setting, growing edible gardens, and embedding food and agricultural literacy into the content of the ECE program.


ALABAMA ran its newly developed Farm to ECE Learning Collaborative with ECE providers in more economically depressed areas of Alabama. They incorporated a mini grant opportunity into their collaborative and helped ECE providers work with Master Gardeners to develop outdoor gardens. See the Alabama Farm to ECE’s Coalition Strategic Plan.

ARIZONA integrated their comprehensive online Farm to ECE trainings on procurement, nutrition and agriculture education, and gardening into an early learning collaborative. The collaborative allowed ECE providers to participate in goal setting and complete farm to ECE assessments. Learn more about Arizona farm to school and ECE initiatives.


ASPHN will disseminate a 2023-24 Farm to ECE Newsletter, that will educate recipients on new resources, opportunity and trainings related to Farm to Early Care and Education.



ASPHN will conduct a 2023-2024 Farm to ECE Webinar Series, that will review topics, innovations, and ideas in Farm to Early Care and Education to help you grow the program in your state or locality.


Browse Previous Meetings & Webinars

Our Partners

The Association of State Public Health Nutritionists (ASPHN) is the administrative lead for this project and would like to thank the ASPHN Farm to ECE Advisory Committee. The advisory committee includes experts in farm to school/ECE programming, maternal and child health, program evaluation, CoIIN processes and public health programming support. These committee members have volunteered their time, creativity and passion to support the organization and implementation of ASPHN’s Farm to ECE grantee programs.

ASPHN’s Farm to ECE grantee programs are one of several programs supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the United States (U.S.) Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of cooperative agreement number NU38OT000279 (total of $6,320,000). The Farm to ECE Grantee programs are 100% supported by this cooperative agreement which is funded by the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity (DNPAO)/ National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP)/CDC/HHS. The contents of this learning session are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by, DNPAO/NCCDPHP/CDC/HHS, or the U.S. government.

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