March is National Nutrition Month! This campaign was created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in 1973 to promote the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.

What better way is there to commemorate this message than to celebrate the Montana Harvest of the Month (HOM) Program; the leaps the program has taken since its inception in 2016 to showcase local foods in Montana institutions; and the pioneering direction in which the program is now headed to showcase local foods in Montana businesses.

Sweet Pea Outdoor School

Since the HOM program launched for audiences in the healthcare and early care & education settings in August 2018, we’ve had over 40 new sites join the HOM family. This means over 450 children and 2,900 patients and family members are understanding the value of eating healthy food grown in your region.

“We know where this money is going. We know that we’re supporting the people within this state. […] The vision for farm to hospital is as simple as it could possibly be.”

Kalispell Regional Medical Center

March also marks the beginning of our HOM Business and Community Pilot Program, which will run until the end of July 2019. Three grocery stores and one food bank in Great Falls, Helena, and Livingston are assisting in the development and evaluation of the current program by utilizing program materials, conducting evaluations, and providing feedback. This information will help us refine the program and its materials for a state-wide launch in December 2019.

So stay tuned, stay healthy, and encourage your local schools, healthcare facilities, and early care & education sites to register for the program today!