Rural Development


Times may be tough, but there’s room in the Farm Bill tent

May 14, 2010

Thursday’s hearing in the House Agriculture Committee brought in two panels of farm and food policy experts to continue the conversation kicked off on late April in preparation for the 2012 Farm Bill. As in the first hearing in late April, the witnesses’ testimony and Representatives’ questions covered a wide range of topics, but consistently […]

Let’s Move! Plan to Beat Child Obesity Ventures Into Ag Policy

May 14, 2010

On Tuesday May 11 the White House released its action plan to reduce childhood obesity.  Tied to the First Lady’s “Let’s Move!” initiative, the plan clearly endorses a role for local agriculture in improving food environments and suggests “discussion areas” to explore the role agriculture policy plays relative to the prices of healthy food and […]

NSAC to host Ag of the Middle Briefing on June 8

May 11, 2010

Click here to forward on the invitation to colleagues. On June 8, 2010, NSAC, Farm Aid, Organic Valley, and Heifer International US Country Program will host a congressional briefing on Agriculture of the Middle: New Strategies to Support America’s Mid-sized Family Farmers. In recent decades, many mid-sized farmers and ranchers who rely on farming as […]

Organizations Urge Congress to Fund Farm to School

May 5, 2010

This Monday, May 3, NSAC and 40 other national agriculture, health, and food business organizations delivered a letter to House and Senate Congressional leaders urging them to include $50 million in mandatory funding for programs linking farmers with local schools as part of the 2010 Child Nutrition Act reauthorization. Among the signers were American Public […]

Small Socially Disadvantaged Producer Grants

April 30, 2010

The USDA announced Wednesday that almost $3.5 million will be available for the Small Socially Disadvantaged Producer Grant program (SSDPG) which provides competitive grant funds for cooperatives or an association of cooperatives to provide technical assistance to socially disadvantaged, small-scale producers. Applications are due by July 27, 2010.  Applicants may propose projects up to $200,000 […]

New NSAC Guide to USDA funding for Food Systems

April 28, 2010

This week, NSAC is launching a new tool to help producers, community-based organizations, local governments, and other groups who are engaged in work to develop their local or regional food system. The Guide to USDA Funding for Local and Regional Food Systems seeks to de-mystify some of the federal grant programs most likely to be […]

And We’re Off: Farm Bill 2012

April 23, 2010

Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-OK) described Wednesday’s House Agriculture Committee Hearing on the Farm Bill as “two-and-a-half hours to kick off two-and-a-half years.” The hearing was the first of Committee Chairman Collin Peterson’s (D-MN) meetings to get a head start on planning for the next Farm Bill, scheduled for completion in 2012. Over the past […]

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.  […]

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, […]

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