Local & Regional Food Systems


$18 million Available for Value-Added Agriculture

August 29, 2017

Editor’s note: Following the publication of this blog post, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) will publish its updated Farmers’ Guide to Applying for the Value-Added Producer Grant Program. The Guide is a free resource that walks farmers through the program’s application requirements, including a step-by-step description of the application and ranking processes. Producing fresh, […]

$16.8 Million Awarded to Increase Access to Healthy Food

August 16, 2017

Millions of Americans struggle each day to access fresh, nutritious food. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) bridges that gap for many lower-income families across the country, connecting them with healthy foods in their supermarkets and at local farmers’ markets. Making healthy purchases at farmers markets has become a particularly desirable option over the last […]

Say Cheese! NSAC Hosts 2017 Summer Meeting in Madison, WI

August 14, 2017

This summer, farm and food advocates have more on their minds than just vacation planning and sweet corn picking. Even though the current farm bill doesn’t expire until next September, the content of the 2018 Farm Bill is already being debated in the halls of Congress, on the farm, and in homes across the country. […]

Federal Reserve Puts Its Money on Regional Food Systems

August 4, 2017

The Federal Reserve, better known for setting the nation’s monetary policy than promoting locally-grown produce, released a book this week celebrating the growing local and regional farm and food sectors as key drivers of economic and community development. Harvesting Opportunity: The Power of Regional Food System Investments to Transform Communities, produced by the Federal Reserve […]

Senate Appropriators Prioritize Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development

July 21, 2017

Following closely on the heels of the House Agriculture Appropriation Subcommittee’s funding bill, which was approved by the full House Appropriations Committee last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee has advanced its agriculture appropriations funding measure for fiscal year (FY) 2018. The Senate bill moved quickly through the Subcommittee and full Committee approval process, with just […]

The Numbers Behind the Farm Bill: A Little-Known Factor for the Fate of Sustainable Ag Programs

July 14, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the third of a four-part series explaining the background budget information that will be used to craft the upcoming 2018 Farm Bill. In this post we look in more detail at the smaller, more innovative programs that receive direct farm bill funding but will need to have their funding renewed in […]

Organics, Specialty Crops, and Local Food on Display in Senate Hearing

July 14, 2017

  A large organic specialty crop producer, a conventional potato farmer, an organic grain company business executive, a food hub operator, and an animal agriculture advocate enter a room… No, this is not the set-up to a cheesy joke, but the incredible diversity of American agriculture that was on display this week as the Senate […]

RFA Roundup: Deadline Reminders and New Funding Opportunities

July 6, 2017

Many program application deadlines are quickly approaching, so if you are a farmer, rancher, non-profit organization, university or other eligible entity and are interested in securing some federal support, make sure you get your application in on time! As part of our ongoing efforts to help farmers and advocates stay up to date with federal […]

House Appropriations Bill Largely Rejects President’s Proposed Cuts to Agriculture Programs

June 29, 2017

“Dead on arrival” is what many in Congress called the President’s fiscal year (FY) 2018 budget request – which included a discretionary funding cut of 21 percent ($47 billion over 10 years) to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) – when it was released earlier this year. This week’s FY 2018 funding bill from the House […]

$7 Million Available to Increase Competitiveness of Specialty Crops

June 28, 2017

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) recently released a Request for Applications (RFA) for the Specialty Crop Multistate Program (SCMP), a component of the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. Approximately $7 million will be available to fund projects from state departments of agriculture on a competitive basis, which will in […]

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