Grants and Programs


USDA Awards $4 Million for Rural Development Projects Including Local Food Hubs

July 30, 2015

On Wednesday, July 29, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded $4 million across 71 projects through the Rural Business Development Grants (RBDG) progarm. The program provides competitive grants to governmental entities, Indian tribes, and nonprofit organizations for planning, technical assistance, job training, and acquisition of land, capital, equipment and other business development needs. Food […]

DC School Demonstrates Farm to School Success With the Help of Farm to School Grant

July 7, 2015

For many schools with summer sessions, June means farm to school activities running in high gear. At Walker Jones Education Campus in the nation’s capital, summer brings students outside and onto the farm (“K Street Farm”) for lessons in agriculture, food, and nutrition while allowing them to enjoy an abundance of local food through its […]

Sustainable Agriculture Research Falling Further Behind

July 2, 2015

Farmers are constantly innovating on their farms, and experimenting with new ways to control pests or boost yields or conserve water on their fields. Farmers’ bottom lines are at stake, especially new farmers getting started out. They have no choice but to find better, more effective ways to address the many challenges that Mother Nature […]

USDA Compass Tool Highlights Local Food Programs

July 1, 2015

Under the Obama Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has focused in a consistent and substantive way on investments in local and regional food systems. Its innovative online tool — appropriately named the “Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass Map” — allows organizations and individuals to search an online database and map to […]

Farmers Travel to DC to Support Funding for Sustainable Agriculture Programs

June 29, 2015

On June 25th, farmers, farm advocates, and agricultural researchers from around the country flew to Washington, DC to share their stories with decision-makers in Congress, the White House, and at the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). Participants hailed from California, Oregon, Wisconsin, Maine, Kansas, and Georgia. NSAC hosted this fly-in at a critical juncture as […]

House Hearing Unexpectedly Highlights Farm to School

June 25, 2015

With Congress just days away from a week-long recess coinciding with Independence Day, the House Education and Workforce Committee’s Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education held a hearing on Wednesday, June 24th entitled Child Nutrition Assistance: Looking at the Cost of Compliance for States and Schools. The hearing is one of several that […]

$17.5 Million Available for Restoration of Wetlands

June 23, 2015

On Monday, June 22, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the availability of $17.5 million for wetland restoration partnerships with state and local governments, Indian tribes, and non-profit organizations in fiscal year 2015. Proposals must be submitted to NRCS state offices by July 31, 2015. Projects will be funded through the Wetlands Reserve Enhancement […]

Conservation Options Communicated to CRP Contract Holders

June 19, 2015

On Wednesday, June 17, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) wrote to all Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) participants with contracts that expire this year to tell them about their options going forward. For the second year in a row, the FSA letter highlighted some excellent conservation choices for farmers and landowners with 10 and 15 year […]

$16 Million Available for Rural Micro-Enterprise Development in 2015

June 19, 2015

Very small businesses are the lifeblood of rural America, yet small entrepreneurs often struggle to access credit and business training. Fortunately, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) operates a rural development program — the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP) — aimed at addressing this gap. RMAP provides loans and grants to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs) — […]

Farm to School Benefits Make Another Appearance at House Hearing

June 18, 2015

Joint blog post from the National Farm to School Network and the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition On Tuesday, June 16th, the House Education and Workforce Committee held a hearing in preparation for the Child Nutrition Act Reauthorization. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack was the sole witness for this hearing entitled “Child Nutrition Assistance: Are Federal Rules and Regulations Serving the Best […]

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