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  • From: Barry Nichols <>
  • To: "" <>
  • Subject: [nafex] $78 Million Available for Local Food Enterprises
  • Date: Thu, 8 May 2014 18:45:09 +0000

[Header Press Release]

Release No. 0084.14


Office of Communications (202)720-4623

USDA Announces $78 Million Available for Local Food Enterprises

Historic Investment Will Support Entire Local Food Supply Chain

WASHINGTON, May 8, 2014 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced
that USDA is making a historic $78 million investment in local and regional
food systems, including food hubs, farmers markets, aggregation and
processing facilities, distribution services, and other local food business

"The 2014 Farm Bill has given USDA new tools, resources and authority to
support the rural economy," Vilsack said. "Consumer demand for
locally-produced food is strong and growing, and farmers and ranchers are
positioning their businesses to meet that demand. As this sector continues to
mature, we see aggregation, processing, and distribution enterprises across
the local food supply chain growing rapidly. These historic USDA investments
in support of local food give farmers and ranchers more market opportunities,
provide consumers with more choices, and create jobs in both rural and urban

Vilsack said that $48 million in loan guarantees for local food projects is
now available through USDA 's Rural Development's Business and Industry
Guaranteed Loan
and $30 million is available through competitive grants via the Agricultural
Marketing Service's (AMS) Farmers Market and Local Foods Promotion

The 2014 Farm Bill requires USDA to set aside at least five percent of
Business and Industry (B&I) program loan guarantees for projects that focus
on local food business enterprises. Details on how to apply for local food
funding through the B&I program are available on the Rural Development
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The B&I program has the
authority to fund local food infrastructure in urban areas as long as the
project supports farm and ranch income and expands healthy food access in
underserved communities.

Rural Development's B&I program provides financial backing for rural business
development in partnership with private-sector lenders. It is one of several
USDA programs that help finance local foods projects. In 2013, Rural
Development supported more than 170 local food infrastructure projects - from
food hubs, to scale-appropriate processing facilities, to cold storage and
distribution networks. Entities eligible for B&I loan guarantees include
cooperatives, non-profit organizations, corporations, partnerships or other
legal entities, Indian tribes, public bodies or individuals.

The 2014 Farm Bill tripled funding for marketing and promotion support for
local food enterprises by creating the Farmers Market and Local Foods
administered by the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). This new program
makes $30 million available annually to farmers markets, other direct
producer-to-consumer venues, and other businesses in the local food supply
chain. Under this program, $15 million is now available for marketing and
promotional support specifically for local food businesses, including food
hubs, delivery and aggregation businesses, and processing and storage
facilities along the local food supply chain, while $15 million is for
marketing support for farmers markets and other direct to consumer outlets.
Since 2009, AMS, which administers this program, has funded nearly 450
projects totaling $27 million to support direct marketing efforts for local
food. More information about how to apply is available on the AMS
Applications are due June 20, 2014.

These funding opportunities are cornerstones of the USDA's commitment to
support local and regional food systems. USDA's Know Your Farmer, Know Your
coordinates the Department's policy, resources, and outreach efforts related
to local and regional food systems The Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food
maps nearly 3,000 local and regional food projects supported by USDA and
eleven other federal agencies. Secretary Vilsack has identified strengthening
local food systems as one of the four pillars of USDA's commitment to rural
economic development, along with production agriculture (including expanding
export markets and improving research), promoting conservation and outdoor
recreation opportunities, and growing the biobased economy.


USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of
discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil
Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC
20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800)
877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).

Barry Nichols
Senior Ecologist
Eco-Tech Consultants
11321 Decimal Drive
Louisville, KY 40299

502.259.0470 office | 502.259.0473 fax | 502.468.4539 mobile<> |


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  • [nafex] $78 Million Available for Local Food Enterprises, Barry Nichols, 05/08/2014

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