Eat Well Play Hard in Child Care Settings (EWPHCCS): Farm to Preschool (F2P) was designed to improve access to and the cost of locally grown fresh produce. This helps address barriers related to poor nutrition and food insecurity.
Sales Models: Farmers accept EBT and WIC
As part of the initiative, F2P Coordinators are hired to work with participating child care centers. The childcare centers participate in the Child and Adult Care Food Program. F2P Coordinators help establish F2P sales models. The sales model helps farmers accept SNAP Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards.
Coordinators also urge farmers to accept WIC Vegetable & Fruit benefits, and other farmer’s market coupon programs. Other programs include the WIC and Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) (link is external) that target low-income families.
F2P Coordinators also offer education and food demonstrations that engage parents and child care center staff. The education helps the parents and child care staff to work to increase the consumption of vegetables and fruits at home and in the child day care center.
To integrate EWPHCCS F2P into classrooms, F2P Coordinators provide each intervention child care center with a gardening toolkit and technical assistance for garden establishment.
For centers that participate in the program, more people eat 3 or more servings of vegetables daily.
Statistically significant differences were observed for the question “How many vegetables do you usually eat each day?” both outside of NYC (p=0.0004) and within NYC (p=0.0002). Specifically, more respondents reported eating 3 or more vegetables daily at follow-up than at baseline for both centers Outside NYC (29.3% vs. 19.3%) and centers within NYC (39.0% vs. 21.8%).
Type of Program
Direct nutrition education and policy, systems, and environmental change
Years of Implementation
Number of Participants
12,150 potential direct, unduplicated reach
Preschool age children and their parents or caregivers
At each participating center, a brief anonymous “Dot Survey” was conducted to capture information about fruit and vegetable purchasing behaviors of target families. Pre-surveys were administered 1-2 weeks prior to the implementation of the EWPHCCS F2P project in each respective market. Follow-up surveys were conducted mid-market season in August.
The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the NYS Department of Health.
This post was submitted by Lisa Borden of the New York State Department of Health, an implementing agency of SNAP-Ed. For more information, please email CACFP@health.ny.gov.