HOLMEN, Wis. (WXOW) - Over 200 schools and sites around the state registered for the annual "Chili Lunch." It is part of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection's way of promoting Farm To Table food.
Avery Bailey, a Junior at Holmen High School and a member of the school's FFA, locally raised pigs that were processed into Italian sausage. This fresh meat was used to make Thursday's chili.
"I raised six Berkshire Hogs which is actually considered the Kobe Beef of pork, so it's a very high-quality pork product," Bailey said. "It is gratifying to see the end product right here at school because if I were to sell the pig meat via the commercial market, I would not be able to see the direct food impact my community."
Holmen Nutrition Services has won awards for their Farm To Table program. Many of the ingredients used to make lunches at the school are grown from the school's hardworking FFA students.
Michael Gasper, the Nutrition Services Supervisor for the School District of Holmen, said he is proud of students like Avery Bailey.
"When it comes down to it, it's all about getting our students fed. That is what's most important," Gasper said. "Studies show that kids who eat a well-balanced meal are going to have better attendance, have better behavior, learn better, and higher test scores."
Schools had the option to use the official 'Wisconsin Chili Recipe' or develop their own. Holmen High School created their spin on chili.