Local & Regional Food Systems


Research Grants Drilldown: Integrated projects on Sustainable Food Systems

April 6, 2010

This is the second in a series of articles drilling down into some sections of the six Request for Applications (RFAs) recently released by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for the 2010 Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI). Check out the first post about Small and Medium-Sized Farms and Rural Community Prosperity.  […]

Research Grants Drilldown: Small and Medium Farms and Rural Communities

April 6, 2010

This is the first in a series of articles drilling down into some sections of the six Request for Applications (RFAs) recently released by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for the 2010 Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).Look out over the course of this week for more information on other opportunities in […]

Rural Business Opportunity Grants Available

March 30, 2010

Yesterday’s Federal Register announced* the availability of grants to fund projects designed to help rural communities create wealth, repopulate and become self-sustaining.  Projects can receive up to $250,000 across a period of up to two years and there is a total of $2.48 million available in 2010. These Regional Business Opportunity Grants (RBOG)  give preference […]

USDA Releases Request for Applications for AFRI Competitive Grants

March 26, 2010

This week, USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (formerly, the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service) released the long-anticipated 2010 Request for Applications (RFAs) for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).  Significantly overhauled and with more funding to award than ever, the AFRI RFAs define a substantive portion of USDA’s research agenda, […]

USDA Women and Working Lands Panel and Discussion

March 26, 2010

March is National Women’s History month, making yesterday (March 25) a fitting date for the USDA “Women and Working Lands: Past, Present, Future” forum held at the USDA headquarters in Washington, D.C.  The forum celebrated the hard work and achievements of women farmers, ranchers and foresters across the nation, and was moderated by USDA Deputy […]

Senate Agriculture Committee Reports Child Nutrition Bill: Farm to School Included; Conservation Cuts Major Point of Contention

March 24, 2010

On Wednesday, March 24, the Senate Agriculture Committee approved the child nutrition reauthorization bill (Healthy Hunger-Free Kids’ Act of 2010) by unanimous consent. The bill increases spending on nutrition programs by $4.5 billion over the next ten years and includes several important school meal program improvements including improved access, nutritional standards, and per meal federal […]

Senate Child Nutrition Bill Includes Agreement on “Competitive Foods”

March 22, 2010

On Wednesday the Senate Agriculture Committee will mark up Senator Lincoln’s Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, the proposed legislation to reauthorize child nutrition programs including school meals and the Women, Infants and Children’s (WIC) nutrition program.  The bill includes new national nutritional standards to be applied to all foods sold in school, including food […]

Lincoln Introduces Child Nutrition Bill for Markup

March 17, 2010

This morning, Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) unveiled her “markup vehicle” for Child Nutrition Act reauthorization and scheduled Committee markup of her draft bill for next Wednesday, March 24.  The proposal is titled “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.” Farm to School would receive just $25 million in the current Lincoln draft.  However, […]

Farm to School Bill Introduced in Senate

March 17, 2010

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) today introduced the Growing Farm to School Programs Act (S. 3123),  a popular proposal to authorize $50 million to USDA to provide start-up funds to communities across the country linking farmers and ranchers to the school lunch program.  Senator Leahy’s bill  is designed to improve the quality of school lunches while […]

Vilsack and Merrigan At Senate Agricultural Appropriations Hearing

March 10, 2010

Appropriations season is in full swing in Washington, and appropriators are deciding which programs to fund and which to cut. Hearings on funding levels for 2011 are occurring almost daily, as the House and Senate Appropriations Committees begin the annual process that generally results in markups in late spring, floor votes in the summer, and […]

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