Beginning and Minority Farmers


FSA Programs Get USDA Push

July 15, 2010

USDA’s Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative recently highlighted Farm Service Agency (FSA) resources that can be used to expand and diversify farm businesses, preserve natural resources critical to future farm income and create links with local and regional food systems. The Farm Storage Facility Loan program was expanded by the 2008 Farm Bill […]

Farmers Agree, Mr. Vilsack: Farm Bill Should Emphasize Beginning Farmers

July 8, 2010

By Anna Jones-Crabtree from Vilicus Farm On July 1st, NSAC posted a blog to applaud Secretary Vilsack’s plea to Congress to support beginning farmers and to encourage USDA to walk the talk. Farmers agree.   Here is how Anna Jones-Crabtree from Vilicus Farm in Montana responded to our blog: We would not be farming if it […]

Farm Credit, Pigford Settlement Funding in House Supplemental War Spending Bill

July 2, 2010

Late on Thursday, July 1st, the House adopted by key amendments to the 2010 supplemental war spending bill (HR 4899).  The House amended a Senate-passed version of the bill from May.  Click here to view NSAC’s initial blog on this bill. The Senate bill included $950 million worth of Farm Service Agency direct and guaranteed […]

Vilsack: Farm Bill Should Emphasize Beginning Farmers

July 1, 2010

A funny thing happened on the way to a Senate Agriculture Committee farm bill hearing to review progress on implementation of the 2008 Farm Bill’s commodity, crop insurance, and disaster assistance programs.  As the lead witness at the June 30 hearing, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack did not read a single word or convey a single […]

Rural Coop Development Grants Available

June 25, 2010

On Friday, June 25, USDA announced the availability of almost $8 million in competitive grant funds through the Rural Cooperative Development Grant Program (RCDG). The RCDG program is designed to improve the economic conditions in rural areas by funding the establishment or operation of Coop Development Centers that can help start up, expand or improve […]

Farmers Fly to Washington D.C. to Have Their Voices Heard

June 25, 2010

On June 23rd, 11 farmers from around the country flew to Washington D.C. to have their voices heard. NSAC hosted the Budget and Appropriations “Fly-In” at a critical juncture as the USDA prepares it’s budget proposals for the Fiscal Year 2012 and Congress starts work to finalize 2011 agricultural appropriations.  The farmers and NSAC staff […]

Comments Invited on the Value-Added Producer Grant Program

June 18, 2010

Family farm advocates have an important opportunity to help shape the Value-Added Producer Grant Program (VAPG).   USDA has requested comments on the administrative rules that will govern the implementation of this important program.   VAPG offers competitive grants to farmers and ranchers developing new farm and food-related business enterprises that boost farm income, create jobs, and increase […]

2009 Value-Added Awards Announced

June 3, 2010

As part of today’s activities associated with the National Rural Summit hosted by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack in Hillsboro, Missouri, USDA announced the long-awaited awards for the 2009 round of Value-Added Producer Grants.  Read the full press release here. Some $22.5 million in grants were available.  Grants were made in 45 states, with Wisconsin, California, […]

Congress Yet to Finish on Pigford, Farm Credit, Child Nutrition Funding

May 28, 2010

Last week we reported on several major pending pieces of legislation.  At that time, two bills — the so-called tax extenders bill and the emergency supplemental appropriations bill — seemed like they might be resolved by today, the beginning of the congressional recess week for Memorial Day.  Alas, while progress was made on both this […]

USDA Rolls Out Conservation Reserve Program Incentive for New Farmers and Ranchers

May 14, 2010

On May 14, USDA issued an Interim Final Rule to implement a Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) transition option provided in the 2008 Farm Bill for retiring landowners to transfer land to beginning or socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.  Sign-up for the program, named the Transition Incentives Program (TIP), begins on May 17, 2010.   The […]

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