ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York state will invest $1.5 million in additional funds in efforts to bring fresh, locally grown farm products to public schools in the coming school year.

School districts can apply for grants of up to $100,000 each that can support the hiring of a program coordinator, staff training or the purchase of equipment to store, prepare or transport farm products.

Since the state's "farm-to-school" program began in 2015 the state has set aside more than $1.8 million to help programs in 164 school districts across the state.

State officials announced the funding on Thursday. Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the program benefits students by providing them with fresh fruits, vegetables and other products while also helping create markets for the state's farmers.

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