Green schools: The food connection

Published on: 
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Karen Dittrich

Karen Dittrich specializes in marketing strategies that engage school communities through food at Creatif Leaf Marketing. This article was originally published on the Green Schools National Network blog. Read the original version. 

Food not only nourishes the body and mind, but it can also be used as a catalyst to create sustainable school communities where students gain knowledge about healthy sustainable living throughout the school grounds, which they can bring into their homes and community. 

I have been working in K–12 school food environments nationwide for many years and I have found that providing educational opportunities and healthy food choices throughout schools can greatly support the pathway to establishing sustainable school communities. By engaging students, their families, and school staff to participate in food, nutrition, and sustainability education together, it can lead to everyone making better choices for healthier lifestyles and a cleaner environment. 

Marketing approaches are changing and engagement marketing has become more prevalent recently for good reason. Approaches are shifting from talking at people to engaging with people to build strong, long-term, and personalized relationships with customers. Unlike traditional marketing approaches where prospects are targeted with direct response deals, engagement marketing allows potential customers to interact and decide how they would like to proceed with a brand or program. Engagement marketing begins when a person is interested in a product or initiative and then decides to take action and engage. After providing relevant information, it is the consumers’ choice on how to proceed, making this approach much more readily accepted by members of Gen Z (today’s students) and their families. 

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